Flight of the Soul

Rainbow especially for Wanda's first flight.

Approaching Lewiston, Montana.

Mel's Dad's house. Martin Olson ranchette!

We seldom realize how our accomplishments affect others; enclosed is a letter our son Jacob wrote to his father on Father's Day.


Mel Olson,
Father, Pilot, Creator,

I don't think I expressed just how inspiring your flight was last Saturday. Not just the flight, but the whole process by which you've created a vehicle to slip the mundane bonds that tie so many of us to the earth.

As the power was poured into the airplane, it began to race down the runway, as did my soul, racing with inspiration and hope for my own future. Seeing the airplane being lifted into the air for the first time left me without words, without thought, yet something more, something much more than I'm accustomed to in my everyday mundane world. Along through the few years since I first found myself lifting off the runway for the first time, I've found other vehicles to help me slip the mundane bonds, like Tai Chi and engineering, but there is something missing in these vehicles. You showed that something to me over the last few years as you've been creating your aircraft but especially on Saturday morning. Flying is something in my soul that does not dissipate.

I have never been so inspired by or proud of someone my entire life than on Saturday. I can see you now trying to downplay the experience or the whole process as something you just wanted to do or something that needed to be done. Well, I understand that aspect as well. That's part of the inspiration and pride, but it is only part of it.

My father, who with my mother created and nurtured my life, created within me a spark that has never been extinguished. It has been reduced at times, as I've needed to concentrate and focus on my other vehicles, but never extinguished. I was burning inside Saturday and still finding myself burning with the desire to continue what I once started.

So when I say I love you dad, it's like saying I love myself as there is so many aspects of you within me that I am so very proud to call my own. Thank you. Thank you for all of the inspiration through the years.

Piece by piece
Staple by staple
Creation envisioned
Creation embodied.

Something to be experienced
Something to inspire
Flying to work
Flight of the soul.

Your son,


Jakes when we got back from his flight over the mountains.