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Thu, Jan 15, 2009

Grace Flight America Joins Forces With Veterans Airlift Command

Organizations Fly Those In Need, For Free

Aero-News has learned Grace Flight of America (GFA) and the Veterans Airlift Command (VAC) recently joined forces, resulting in the establishment of the premier national charitable flying organization.

Joining with Grace Flight of America's 1,380 pilots, Veterans Airlift Command's 855 pilots, based in 45 states, will provide seamless, efficient, nationwide service to our country's wounded warriors, those in need of distant medical treatment, and as a volunteer flying resource in times of national emergencies.

"I am thrilled about the creation of an efficient nationwide organization which will capitalize on the strengths of both organizations," said Walt Fricke, Chairman and founder of VAC. "Together, we will better serve our pilots, patrons, and veterans. After much research and thoughtful deliberation, we determined GFA was the best fit for us in light of their system efficiencies, growth opportunities, and specifically, their intense focus on the mission. The combined organization promises to preserve the legacy of the VAC and allow for significant growth. I could not be more pleased."

Volunteer Pilot and Chairman of GFA, O. R. (Butch) Smith, added, "We are very excited about the opportunity to have VAC join with us. We are jointly committed to grow this valuable and patriotic service for our veterans, while answering the universal request of our many constituents, including in particular our generous donors, for a true nationwide presence. In addition, our remarkable GFA pilots have continually expressed an interest in doing more for our veterans. This merger will provide just that opportunity, alongside our medical, humanitarian and national emergency missions. This is truly a win-win combination of like-minded organizations."

Based in Minneapolis, MN, Veterans Airlift Command provides free air transportation to wounded warriors, veterans and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes through a national network of volunteer aircraft owners and pilots. Grace Flight of America, based in Addison, TX, helps people in need of free air transportation for medical and humanitarian purposes.

FMI: www.veteransairlift.org, www.graceflight.org

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