Friday, August 7, 2015

Local authors promote women in aviation in newest children’s book

 FREDERICK, Md. -- Two Frederick children's authors are out with a new book after their first one about a flying dog became a local hit.

“Turbo the Flying Dog” is a children’s book series based off the real-life story of Turbo. Turbo was rescued from a high-kill shelter in West Virginia, but instead of driving, his new owners flew to get him.

His books encourage children’s literacy as well as adopting pets from animal shelters.

"Turbo took his first flight at 6 weeks old and has been flying with us ever since. He's now logged close to 80 hours in flight with us," said Victoria Zajko, Turbo’s owner and co-author of the newest volume, "Turbo Learns to Fly.”

The book has become popular with kids in the area and Turbo makes frequent appearances throughout the community.

"I see messages to my dog everyday on his Facebook. He has a lot of followers, more than I do, and people are talking to him and can't wait to see his next adventure," said Zajko.

In the second book, released a few weeks ago, Turbo gets some flight lessons from a pilot not often seen in the field.

"Olive is his flight instructor and she's a girl pilot," said co-author Kelly Kennedy.

Zajko has been a pilot for about nine years now and believes there's an industry shortage of women in aviation.

"We’re really trying to encourage girls to enter this industry whether it's as a pilot, maybe air traffic control, or maybe even an airplane mechanic. Only six percent of pilots are women," Zajko said.

Zajko and Kennedy hope the book can be a small step in closing the gender gap, but they also want to share the joys of flying with everyone.

"We are trying to promote that as well as rescue and reading, and just getting more kids involved. Boys, girls, it doesn't matter - flying can be fun for everyone," Kennedy said.

If you'd like to meet Turbo or Olive or follow them on their adventures, click here for a list of upcoming events. Both books are available for purchase through

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