Donate $1 a mile – let’s get the kids to Camp this summer!

Pilot Neal Dillman is flying Jose C. and Elias A. 186 miles to Champ Camp, a special camp for kids who are burn survivors. Over 500 AFW flights take place each summer, transporting children to camps like Camp Kindle (affected by HIV/AIDS) and The Painted Turtle (serious medical conditions). You can enable a child to spend some fun, quality time with children like themselves. No amount is too little! Click onto: https://afids.angelflightwest.org/give. Please make a note that this is a tribute gift for camps. We thank you and so do these kids!

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Painted Turtle Camper

Angel Flight West is the official airline for The Painted Turtle Camps where children with serious medical conditions celebrate just being kids! Through innovative, camp-based programs that offer a great big dose of fun and support, children with more than 70 medical conditions visit the camps each year, reclaiming the joys of childhood. Valerie H. attended the Painted Turtle camp recently and was flown home by pilot Harmik DerSahakian.

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Champ Camp!

AFW’s Josh and Isabel greeted 29 campers (all burn survivors) and 21 pilots last Saturday, 6/18 at the Fresno Yosemite International Airport (FAT). Campers were returning home from a week long summer Champ Camp run by the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation. AFW has been flying campers to and from Champ Camp for over 20 years. Pictured is 18 year old Anthony M and Pilot Dave Lombard who has flown for AFW for 13 years and especially likes the camp missions.

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UPDATE! AFW: Toys for Tots!

Pilot Luis Perez and his 50 furry passengers wait for the weather to break in San Diego during Memorial Day weekend as the group is making their way to AFW office at Santa Monica airport. The  toys will be gifts provided to our littlest passengers during missions. A huge thanks to Pilot Perez for his time and fuel for the plane,  the Literacy First Charter School 7th grade class of El Cajon for collecting the toys and Cartwright Termite & Pest Control for donating the use of the plane. What a team effort!

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50+ furry friends delivered to AFW on June 2, 2016. Thank you pilot Luis Perez and Team!!

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We VALUE our volunteers!

On Friday 4/22, AFW hosted a luncheon for our volunteers in recognition of National Volunteer Week. During 2015, AFW had 1,912 magnificent volunteers who served 3,863 people. Soon, all volunteers will receive their member decal to affix to their plane or auto.

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Pictured are some of our awesome office volunteers: Christina, Christian, Margot and Ari.IMG_0357

Our volunteers wear many hats!

Mike Forney, Angel Flight West volunteer for over 13 years, wears many hats in service to AFW. Mike has been a command pilot and serves as Wing Leader for the Colorado Wing. In addition, he leads outreach efforts to educate those who may request missions from Angel Flight West. Mike attended the Rocky Mountain Blood Cancer Conference recently and is pictured here touting our great services to a nurse attendee.

Thank you Mike, for giving back!

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It’s National Volunteer Week – meet one of our volunteers who goes above and beyond: Idaho Wing Leader Steve Laflin

 

I have been flying with AFW for about ten years.  I am a U. S. Navy submarine veteran and a graduate of Idaho State University.  I have been running a small business that I started nearly twenty years ago in Idaho Falls.  In addition to flying my wife Dottie and I love the outdoors especially time on our Tennessee walking horses in the mountains.Steve Laflin

I knew I wanted to fly for AFW even before I finished my private pilot lessons because it seemed such a great opportunity to help people in a unique way.  I have found my participation in AFW to be one of the most rewarding experiences in my life.  Our AFW passengers are going through very tough times.  Yet without exception their optimism, inner strength, and courage are a continuous inspiration to me.  I am proud to be a small part of an organization that plays such an important role in helping people.

Thank you Steve, for giving back!!

 

 

 

 

 

It’s National Volunteer Week – meet one of our Idaho volunteers who goes above and beyond: Ryan DeLuca

I’ve lived in Boise, Idaho for almost all of my life and fell in love with fitness in high school.  In 1999 I founded Bodybuilding.com, which is now the world’s largest online supplement retailer, and retired from it late last year at 38 years old. I tried to stay retired but couldn’t, recently starting a new company, Black Box VR, to create virtual reality boutique gyms. I earned my pilot’s license in 2004 and fly my PC-12 almost every week for fun, charity and business. My biggest life accomplishment is being the father of three amazing kids that love to assist on Angel Flights.

I’m very fortunate to have the resources and ability to quickly fly to many cities around the western United States at a moment’s notice. Using my airplane to help others is a great way to give back in a unique way and make a difference for people that need to get to doctors or specialists. The passengers are always very grateful for the help in their time of need. I’m very lucky to be able to help in this way and appreciate the hard work that Angel Flight West puts in to make this possible. (In photo, Ryan is pictured on the left.)

Thanks for giving back, Ryan!

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It’s National Volunteer Week – meet one of our volunteers who goes above and beyond: Claudio Friederich

Being able to fly an aircraft had been a childhood dream of mine.  Although I pursued other interests in school and university programs, exposing young people to aviation simply did not exist in Hawaii during my childhood. So, learning to fly remained a fascination of mine.  At the University of Hawaii at Manoa I majored in physics, first intending to study astronomy in graduate school and becoming an astronomer. But my plans changed and after undergraduate school I turned my other hobby, software development, into a career.  I took a job as a software developer in a local engineering firm, TRI-L Data Systems Inc., a company with whom I have remained for the last 18 years.  About 12 years ago, I decided to actually learn to fly as a hobby, attended AirVenture Oshkosh to learn more, and earned my private pilot certificate later that year from a local flight school, Big Kahuna Aviation, at Honolulu International Airport . Not long after that, I bought a used Cessna 172, the aircraft I still own and fly now.  In 2008 I trained for and earned my instrument rating, also at HNL, from another local flight school, Noah Flying.  I enjoyed carrying passengers, but without a large social circle, there was little occasion for that.  This was a major reason Angel Flight West was attractive to me.  It gave me a reason to fly, provided passengers who were truly helped, and was something I would feel good about doing.  So I joined AFW a few years after I earned my instrument rating and acquired the needed qualifications.  I have enjoyed being an AFW member ever since! (In photo, Claudio is pictured on the right.)

Thank you Claudio, for giving back!!

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