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90-year-old Builds Airplane from Scratch

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WINNEBAGO, Minn. -

He's already restored five cars, and at 90-years-old, and there's no sign Neil Royer slowing down anytime soon.

In fact, the Winnebago resident is reaching for the skies, literally.

Down a quiet Winnebago alley, Neil Royer is staying busy as he wheels out his latest project; something you wouldn't expect to find in a garage.

"It's been a lot of fun--it kept me out of the pool hall for about 7 years," Royer said. "Right now it's a godsend, because my wife died in November, and I've spent a lot of time on it since then."

Those years have translated into a world of joy for Royer, as he is working to build a 1929-model, Pietenpol aircraft.

"The engine is a Model A Ford Engine," Royer said.

Royer served in the U.S. Navy as a flight engineer during World War II. Now he's hoping to use that experience to pilot his project into the air.

"I haven't flown...since I got of out of the Navy...in 1946," he said.

While it's been many years, Neil says getting behind the controls one last time would complete his bucket list.

"I itch to get behind there," Royer said.

While his family doesn't want him at the controls, Royer says he plans to get some space soon at the local airport where he can work on the plane.

"Well then I can taxi the airstrip, you know, and maybe I'll accidentally take off," he said.

Royer says the plane will be air-worthy in about a year.