Profile - The CAF Red Tail Project

My photo
South St. Paul, MN, United States
The mission of the Commemorative Air Force's (CAF) Red Tail Squadron is to preserve and share the history and legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen, America's first black military pilots. The Airmen served with distinction during WWII (and beyond). They overcame racism on the ground to fight fascism in the air, fighting for a country that turned a blind eye to policies and a large population that discriminated against these men and their families because of the color of their skin. The CAF Red Tail Squadron restored and flies a red-tailed P-51C Mustang such as the Airmen flew during WWII. The airplane appears at air shows in North America and at each stop her crew tells the story of the Airmen and how through persistence and courage they overcame huge obstacles in order to serve in the military. In 2011, the CAF Red Tail Squadron developed a traveling exhibit called "RISE ABOVE" to educate people - especially young people - about the Airmen and how they demonstrated the importance of setting goals and overcoming obstacles in order to succeed.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Giving Thanks for Angel Flights

     I don’t have a pilot’s license - and will be envious of those who do until the day I die - so you would be correct in wondering why I’d devote a Red Tail Squadron blog entry to “angel flights” since there’s no chance I could ever participate as a pilot and give a first-person account.  There is no direct connection to the Tuskegee Airmen or World War II or history, either.
    Ah, but is that really true?  What if a Tuskegee Airman (and remember the “Tuskegee Airman” title also refers to ground personnel who supported the fighter and bomber pilots throughout the war years) needed to get to a medical appointment in another city, but the distance was a challenge or the travel cost was a budget issue?  Maybe time was an issue, too.  He or she could contact a local Public Benefit Flying Organization (a.k.a. an “angel flight” group) to arrange to be flown to and from the appointment at no charge. 
     Of course, this service is available to more than just Tuskegee Airmen. There is a network of Public Benefit Flying Organizations across the U.S. and all have the same goal – to provide free transportation in private aircraft to those needing to get to medical appointments at facilities a distance from their homes.  There is also no charge if a caregiver needs to come along on the flight to help the patient.  The participating pilots donate their time and aircraft; all of the organizations are supported by financial donations to defray additional costs.   
     Here is a quick list of the groups that offer “angel flights” in the United States and the states they serve (states with asterisks behind them are served by multiple organizations):

Angel Flight Central (www.angelflightcentral.org)
IA, NE, ND, SD
Angel Flight East (www.angelflighteast.org)
KY, MD, NJ, NY, PA*
Angel Flight Inc. Oklahoma (www.angelflight.org):
AR, KS, LA*, MO, NM*, OK, TX
Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic (www.angelflightmidatlantic.org):
NC, VA, Washington DC, WV
Angel Flight Northeast (www.angelflightne.org):
CT, DE, ME, MA, NH, OH, RI, VT
Angel Flight Soars (www.angelflightsoars.org):
GA, MS, SC, TN
Angel Flight West (www.angelflightwest.org):
AK, AZ, CA, CO, HI, ID, MT, NV, NM*, OR, UT, WA, WY
Cair Flight (www.cairflight.org)
FL
Giving Flight (www.givingflight.org):
AL
Lifeline Pilots (www.lifelinepilots.org):
IL, IN, MN, WI
Pilots for Patients (www.pilotsforpatients.org)
LA*
Volunteer Pilots Association (www.volunteerpilots.org)
PA*

Other websites with general information about these types of flights include www.angelflights.com and www.aircareall.org.
     These charitable groups are always looking for “Earth angels” too, so if you’re not a pilot but would like to help out, contact a group near you.  Of course if you ARE a pilot and want to be involved, same deal – click on the link of the group that serves your area, give them a call and see if you can help.
    
The CAF Red Tail Squadron is a volunteer-driven 501c3 non-profit organization that operates under the auspices of the Commemorative Air Force. For more information, please visit redtail.org.

www.redtail.org



No comments:

Post a Comment