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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Monday, March 13, 2023

Aviation Inspiration: Laura Savino

 A Life Lived Well!

Dreams Become Reality
When You Find Your Passion
and Live Fearlessly

Karlene and Laura Savino

Last month I interviewed with Liz Booker as part of her "Aviatrix Author Interviews" and subsequently found myself invited to connect with other aviation authors at an Aviatrix reading and reception in Long Beach California. I was inspired and in awe of all the authors I met, and look forward to reading each of their books. But today is about the Jet Boss.

At the reading event I had the opportunity to sit with Laura Savino, a retired United Captain. When she told me she recorded her memoir Jet Boss without a studio and read it herself, I immediately downloaded the book on audible and promised to let her know what I thought. The first word that comes to mind is:



Laura's memoir is absolutely worth the read for any pilot, any want-to-be pilot, anyone fearful of reaching their dreams, any woman, man, or someone who just loves a story of a well lived life. I also hope the mechanic that she almost killed, the passenger who told her of an issue as he ran out the cabin that she listened to, and the passenger she so eloquently told off in the first class cabin all read this too. Do not be mistaken that a well lived life is cotton candy and sugarplums. I found myself laughing out loud at one moment, and tears filling my eyes at another. Her recount of 911 and the pilot friends she'd lost along this journey were heartfelt. I cringed and wanted to tell this young aviator... "Don't do that! You're going to kill yourself! You're going to get violated! You'll never become an airline pilot!"

Spoiler Alert:

Clearly she lived, and was not violated (by the FAA at least) because she made it to United Airlines and found herself as a captain, responsible for hundreds of lives daily. Laura's life lessons, joys, sorrows, and a handsy captain on short final, was incredibly well written. There was no "poor me" and no "I'm the best pilot in the world"... there was authentic discussion on the stupid shit she did as a new pilot and the lessons she learned. 

"Teenage Captain"

Female Airline Pilot

Laura shares stories of being a woman in the cockpit. I smiled at one of her techniques dealing with cockpit pornography because I did the same thing at Evergreen. Her hindsight, wisdom and how she handled issues and what she would have done differently has a lesson to teach all pilots. What happened to her and a number of other female pilots must be read. Her courage when she found her voice might just surprise you as to what happened.

For those women who feel guilt, and struggle being a mother and pilot will find compassion in Laura's discussion on this subject. I found tears here to, because I felt exactly the same. Perhaps we all do. 

"Baby Einstein"

Aviator Extraordinair 

While Laura may not brag on herself in this book, and often shares her weaknesses and fears, her flying skills were evident. The icing event on her first captain flight in the A320 in a strong crosswind, and other flight stories throughout, were so well written you might as well have been in the cockpit with her. But more than that, the A320 is a challenging airplane in a crosswind for a new pilot. Laura is pure aviator. She took her job serious. She held herself accountable. She learned from everything she did. United Airlines was very lucky to have had Laura Savino representing their company and protecting their passengers. 


Laura's craft of the language is powerful. Her word choice, sentence structure, characters, and everything about the manner in which she told her story was amazing. As writers we are told to find "voice" and often that's confusing. Well, Laura found hers. Speaking of which, I am now going to circle back to the beginning, because I did not read her book, I listened to it on Audible, and am so glad I did! 

Laura's voice, emphasis, and ability to understand and correctly speak aviation terminology made this audible book so much fun to listen to. She told her own story and she did it impeccably. 

"Secret Flyer"


The entire book was an inspiration, but the ending was incredibly heartfelt. Yes, the fairy dust can fade for many different reasons but life goes on. Accidents happen. Health issues arise. But there is life after flying. Laura encourages all of us to follow our passion. Be fearless! So many lessons to be learned within. A must read! 

If you want a GREAT read
I highly recommend 
Jet Boss

You can find Laura at
On Twiter @LauraSavino747
and on LinkedIn: Laura Savino

Enjoy the Journey!
XOX Karlene 


  1. It is on my list as well as Karlene’s books. I read a lot and look forward to all of them.


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