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Articles for category Human Interest




Jan
11
2021

Grace from Above - Mercy Air Supports Africans in Need

Posted by Admin

“To paint a picture of how remote some of the people are that we serve, it takes the inhabitants who live in areas of the Zambezi Delta three days to reach civilization by dugout canoe. The helicopter can reach those areas in 20 minutes.” - Matthias Reuter, Mercy Air helicopter program director  THE MISSION From 1977 to 1992, the Mozambican Civil War was a bloody battle to control the African nation. The war was fought between Mozambique's ruling Marxist Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (FRELIMO), anti-communist insurgent forces of the Mozambican National Resistance (RENAMO), and a number of smaller factions.  The Mozambican Civil War destroyed much of Mozambique's critical rural infrastructure, including hospitals, rail lines, roads, and schools. Additionally, according to estimates, over one million Mozambicans were killed in the fighting or starved due to interrupted food supplies; an additional 5 million were displaced across the region. In 1990, Mercy Air was born out of this conflict as a Christian initiative operating as a fixed-wing missionary program. The airplanes were initially used to provide relief and support to refugees fleeing Mozambique along the border of South Africa. Due to rebels and the poor security situation in the region, moving people and supplies via ground vehicles was too risky. In 2004, Mercy Air decided to add helicopters to their operations. Rotorcraft not only enhanced the aviation operation’s capability, but significantly expanded the geographic locations it could serve.  [Read More...]



Tags: Humanitarian Relief Helicopters Mercy Air
Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Dec
28
2020

Best of 2020 Legacy - Matthew (Matt) Zuccaro

Posted by Admin

Matthew Zuccaro was a quintessential leader for the Helicopter Association International (HAI), serving first on the board of directors in 1987, then as board chair in 1991, then as president in 2005. He retired in January, only about a month before his passing on Feb. 25, 2020 at the age of 70. “Matt was one of a kind in our industry,” current HAI President and CEO James Viola said. “Helicopters were part of his life, beginning with his U.S. Army service in Vietnam. Throughout his career, he made safe helicopter operations his priority, and we are a better, stronger, and safer industry today because of his efforts on behalf of rotorcraft.” [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter Association International Matt Zuccaro Matt Zuccaro
Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Dec
28
2020

Best of 2020 Legacy - James (Jim) Wisecup

Posted by Admin

Former Helicopter Association International (HAI) Board of Directors chair James Wisecup never stopped learning. When he retired as assistant chief pilot for Air Methods in 2019, he had just earned a bachelor’s in aviation science from Southern Utah University. “Jim was a highly respected member of the rotorcraft community, and we will miss his knowledge and leadership,” HAI president and CEO James Viola said. “He was an advocate for safe flying, training, and mentorship, and he was always willing to share his experience and passion for flying.” [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter Association Internation Jim Wisecup Jim Wisecup
Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Dec
28
2020

Best of 2020 Legacy - Rudy Frasca

Posted by Admin

Rudy Frasca was a true pioneer in the world of flight simulation. He was first inspired by his older brother’s model airplane that motivated him to learn to fly at the tender age of 14. “From then on, he was just hooked,” said his daughter Peggy Prichard, marketing manager for Frasca International. Frasca joined the Navy in 1949, teaching pilots at the Glenview Naval Air Station on early Link Trainers. After the Korean War, he attended the University of Illinois Aviation Research Laboratory at Urbana-Champaign, where he honed his flight simulation skills and conducted research in aviation psychology. [Read More...]



Tags: Frasca Simulation Rudy Frasca
Categories: categoryHuman Interest categoryOpinion-Editorial



Dec
21
2020

Executive Watch - Romain Trapp, Airbus Helicopters

Posted by Admin

The Airbus Helicopters Inc. president and head of the North America region for helicopters was once so shy he was afraid to phone anyone he didn’t know. Romain Trapp says, “I was really super shy. I had to write down in advance every word I planned to say in a call.” So, the college accounting and finance student got fed up with his handicap and devised a strategy to overcome it. “I came to the point where enough was enough and I began to force myself out of my shyness,” he says. “For example, I volunteered to organize a conference at my college; it forced me to interact with people. Eventually, I worked my way out of my shyness, so that I now have no problem speaking to an audience of 200 people.” That’s a good thing, because presiding over a global original equipment manufacturer (OEM) like Airbus Helicopters is not a cubicle-in-the-bowels-of-a-building position for the super shy. It requires someone who can get out into the rotorcraft world, see how it’s changing, and react. When pressed to talk about his personal strengths as a top corporate executive , the humble leader says, “My strength, I think, is my ability to grasp the big picture and develop strategy from that view. Also, I develop a sense of belonging to the team as soon as I start a new job. You’ll notice that when I talk, I use the word ‘we’ and never ‘them’ nor ‘I.’ Finally, I have developed an ability to adapt to changing circumstances because I’ve had different responsibilities in different countries.” [Read More...]



Tags: Airbus Helicopters president Romain Trapp
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest



Nov
23
2020

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Dennis Bowdoin, Helicopter Air Specialty Service

Posted by Admin

What is your current position? I’m the owner and operator of Helicopter Air Specialty Service, owner and operator of AMP/HASS LLC a Robinson Service Center, owner and operator of the Maple Grove Heliport (E66), and manager of the Maple Grove Airport (65G) at Fowlerville, Michigan. Tell me about your first flight? I had a chain of 126 retail stores and needed to get to one of them fast. I hired a pilot that turned out to be a CFI to get me there. He let me fly! Most expensive flight I ever took. It was a thrill. Five lessons later, I was buying my first helicopter: a Robinson R22. I had no license, but I owned a helicopter, which forced me to get my license. Failure was not an option. [Read More...]



Tags: Dennis Bowdoin Helicopter Air Specialty Service Meet A Rotorcraft Pro
Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest



Sep
28
2020

Car lot conflagration: A unique fire with many lessons learned

Posted by Admin

There are wildfires in the woods, and then there are crazy-strange wildfires such as a recent one in Florida that was fueled by hundreds of cars. When you battle that kind of conflagration, you’re bound to learn a few new lessons. We certainly did. [Read More...]



Tags: Car lot aerial fire Charlotte County Aviation Unit
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest categoryTraining



Aug
24
2020

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Matt Presnal, Coptersafety

Posted by Admin

RPMN: What is your current position? I am the regulatory compliance manager at Coptersafety in Helsinki, Finland, which means that I manage and direct all aspects of Coptersafety’s FAA training programs as well as our FAA Level D full-flight simulator qualifications. We operate H125, H145, AW139, and AW169 full flight simulators. Coptersafety is the largest independent simulator training center in the world. We provide helicopter specific initial training and type ratings, recurrent training, and specialty tailored training programs in our simulators for customers around the world. My family and I moved to Finland about three years ago from Canada after I left my previous position of nine-plus years with Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation where I held positions as a maintenance test pilot, site manager, and field service representative. [Read More...]



Tags: Coptersafety Matt Presnal Meet A Rotorcraft Pro
Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Jul
27
2020

Executive Watch - Trevor McIntyre, TracPlus CEO

Posted by Admin

TracPlus, headquartered in New Zealand, coordinates collaboration and communication between first responders on a shared platform that has now logged 6,500,000 flight hours, which seems to approximate how many academic credit hours the technology company’s CEO, Trevor McIntyre, has accumulated. The executive has a bachelor’s degree and postgraduate degrees from Rhodes University in his native land of South Africa, as well as a further postgraduate degree from the University of Natal, and a Master’s Degree (with first class honors) from the National College of Ireland. Then there are his two professional charters as well. He’s a Chartered Accountant through his fellowship in the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants. That’s impressive book-cracking. However, you’d be mistaken if you deemed McIntyre an ivory tower student detached from the real business world. Most of those degrees were earned in night classes while he pursued his career in the light of day day with Big Four accounting consulting firms, like KPMG and PWC, helping companies recognize their strengths and find their sometimes hidden flaws. “Studying that way (at night) taught me how to manage my time effectively and that you can fit more into your life than you believe that you can. I believe that education is a key part of constantly striving to improve yourself. My parents were both teachers and really emphasized the importance of lifelong learning to my brothers and I. It is a key part of what I try to embed into my teams.” says McIntyre. [Read More...]



Tags: Executive Watch TracPlus
Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryCompany Profiles categoryHuman Interest



Jun
29
2020

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Scott Kerchner

Posted by Admin

RPMN: What is your current position? I am the assistant chief pilot for Southern California and Hawaii for REACH Air Medical Services. I have responsibility for 44 pilots at 11 bases as well as three IFR reserve pilots and two instructor pilots/check airmen; it keeps me fairly busy. I enjoy working with pilots and flying first-rate helicopters in the single-pilot IFR role. RPMN: Tell me about your first flight. My first helicopter flight was in the U.S. Navy flight school at South Whiting Field near Pensacola, Florida. I was a student naval aviator and had been selected to fly helicopters in the United States Marine Corps. From the moment we lifted off in the TH-57C, I was hooked! I had flown fixed-wing prior: a T-34C at North Whiting Field, and Cessnas at the Don Scott airport affiliated with The Ohio State University when I was a college student there. My actual first flight was in a Cessna 152 at Ohio State. RPMN: How did you get your start in helicopters? As a Marine officer pilot at Whiting Field. Upon getting designated as a naval aviator and getting my wings, I was sent on to learn to fly the Sikorsky CH-53D Sea Stallion and eventually the CH-53E Super Stallion. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryHuman Interest


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