By Kerry McGinley
When Alvaro Flores was a young boy, he was fascinated by the helicopters that took off and landed near his Gypsum, Colorado, home. He also deeply admired his elementary school teachers who helped him learn English, the second language he worked to master after his family immigrated from Mexico. Both set him on his ultimate career path. He won multiple scholarships support his college education, but the funds decreased his final year. Financial pressure and dreams of aviation prompted him to quit college his senior year and join the Army.