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Massachusetts Maritime Academy - From Choppy to Chopper! Admissions - From Choppy to Chopper!

Ryan A. Lynch, ’97 alum of Barnstable High School, Barnstable, MA, graduated from MMA in 2001 with a B.S. in Marine Engineering and a 3rd Assistant Engineering License (that’s an oceangoing license). You may say that he’s really “gone up” in the world! Today Major Lynch is one of Barack Obama’s U. S. Marine Corps helicopter pilots.

Lynch grew up on Cape Cod. He loved the ocean and most everything that went with it. He was attracted to the Academy because of its nautical environment, the Regiment or leadership component and the well-rounded but unique educational experience. “The leadership training, academics and staff combine to drive cadets to work hard, all the while teaching one how to make the best of any situation. The leadership traits and personal ethos that were engrained in me at MMA, beginning in orientation, are still with me today. They set the foundation for my career as a Marine Officer. And it’s not all marching and math. I was part of the sailing team, taking second place at Nationals. We then went on to the World Cup for Collegiate sailing – in France – and took first place at Nationals the following year,” he remembered.

Upon graduation, he chose to accept a commission as a 2nd Lt in the United Stated Marine Corp and was designated a Naval Aviator in January 2004. Since then Ryan has served in Africa and Afghanistan. He also deployed to Argentina as well as New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina (2005), aiding in hurricane relief and humanitarian operations.

By June 2009, Lynch was transferred to the Presidential Helicopter Squadron in Quantico, VA, one of five “Marine One” pilots. “This job is a very humbling experience. It takes a team to accomplish it on a daily basis. Much of what we do is in the national spotlight and there is no room for error. I have flown all over the world in support of the President. To land on the South Lawn of the White House and welcome the President onto the helicopter is an unbelievable and inexplicable experience,” Lynch noted.

Recently promoted to Major, Lynch lives with his wife and four children, ages two and under, in Northern Virginia. This grad is a man on the way up. The sky is not his limit!

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last updated 2-25-2013 by