After graduation from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Medicine in 1972, orthopedic surgeon Riley Jones, MD, managed to find just enough money and a few hours each week during his internship to take flying lessons.
He would seem to be an unlikely candidate to be traveling high above the operating room with single-engine, multi-engine, and instrument ratings.
“I have a fear of heights,” Jones confessed. “I cannot go to the edge of something and look over without starting to get that funny feeling in my stomach, but at one time I could take an acrobatic plane and spin it and roll it over and not feel a thing because I have control of the airplane. It’s really a control issue.”
For some 43 years now, he has surgically restored control to patients with all manner of joint problems in their knees and shoulders. As a former small-college basketball player, Jones liked sports medicine and helping injured athletes return to competition.