Patient AirLift Services (PALS), a nonprofit volunteer pilot organization, reached a major milestone July 22 when it completedits 1,000th charitable flight flying Afghanistan war veteran and double leg amputee Marine Corporal Jessie Fletcher from Boston to Baltimore.
It’s an intriguing story: A young Florida girl, just 15, is deaf and blind. And she recently got the chance to fly a plane. According to a story in the St. Augustine Record, the flight was coordinated by Linwood Nooe, the director of Operation P.R.O.P., a nonprofit organization that offers free flights to people with disabilities. Nooe started the organization in 2010 with the intention of exposing people to aviation, especially those who may not have ever been able to fly in an airplane.
On a cold and windy February day, LightHawk volunteer pilot Michael Baum and his daughter Kimberly embarked on a cross-country journey from their home in Los Altos, Calif., to help give black-footed ferrets a fighting chance to bounce back from near extinction and rejuvenate the North American prairie at the same time.
Gunnery Sgt. John Hayes of the U.S. Marine Corps is a huge fan of the Chicago Bulls basketball team. His dream of going to a Bulls’ home game became even more remote after a roadside bomb cost him both legs while serving on combat duty in Afghanistan.
While speaking to a public affairs officer at Walter Reed National Naval Medical Center in Maryland, Joe Howley, president of Patient AirLift Services, realized he could make a difference in the lives of these soldiers and show appreciation for the sacrifices they have made for our country. Through PALS, he could arrange the transportation needed to get them out of the hospital for some R&R (rest and relaxation).
On Monday, Feb. 27, Joy Covey, a LightHawk volunteer pilot from Woodside, Calif., had some very special guests aboard her Pilatus PC-12: Two orphaned, injured mountain lion cubs, who needed to be taken to the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center in Scottsdale, Ariz.
General aviation alphabet group the National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has partnered with Veterans Airlift Command (VAC) to raise funds for their mission supporting our combat wounded. VAC is a charitable organization that provides free air transportation to wounded warriors, veterans, and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes. NATA and VAC established a special fund last year, NATA Wings for Warriors, to contribute to the organization. This year, NATA’s support of VAC has been expanded throughout all of the association’s major 2012 events.