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American Airlines Hosts Warriors in Flight Simulator

October 10, 2013 3 minute Read by Christopher Broom (American Airlines)

This guest blog is by Christopher Broom, Managing Director, Flight Training at American Airlines.

American Airlines has a long history of supporting our military and veterans.  At times we have even provided aircraft and crewmembers as part of the Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF).  In fact, American has a dedicated department to manage a program called “Veterans and Military Initiatives” whose intent is to serve the men and women who wear the cloth of this nation.  I am fortunate to work with a great team in the American Airlines Flight Department, in which 60 percent of our pilots have served or are serving in the military, in addition to many other Flight and airline employees. 

As the Managing Director Flight Training, I am very fortunate to see and participate in some wonderful events honoring these brave and courageous men and women.  Every year the Flight Department hosts the “American Airlines Charity Golf Classic,” benefitting the George W. Bush Presidential Center’s Military Service Initiative and Susan G. Komen.  This year I had the honor of flying on a tribute flight for Medal of Honor recipients and attending their luncheon.  We recently held a ceremony for current and retired American Airlines employees who were Prisoners of War (POWs).  During the fall and winter seasons, we will have our Salute to the Troops, Skyball, and Snowball Express events for veterans and families who have lost a loved one in combat.

We are lucky to have airplanes proudly displaying the yellow ribbon on the tails in support of “those that serve.”  A portion of our fuel savings initiatives goes to Air Compassion for Veterans, providing tickets to wounded warriors and their families. 

We greatly appreciate the Bush Center for allowing us to be an active participant in the Warrior Open as a company and as individuals.  I have had the opportunity to caddie for some great warriors over the past three years.  Friendships have been created that will no doubt last a lifetime.  For the last two years, many warriors have come to the American Airlines Flight Academy on the “travel in” day to fly our full flight simulators.  We have all had a lot of fun in the simulators!  We have a waiting list of American Airlines volunteers who want to help on that day.  As with most military and veterans’ events, we find that we personally get much more out of our participation than the warriors do!