Skip to main content

Southwest Airlines Community

Snowball Express--Changing the Lives of Thousands

Not applicable
rw-thank-you-t-shirt.JPG In 1997, a Southwest Airlines Flight Crew bound from Los Angeles to Phoenix was faced with a three-hour Air Traffic Control delay. In traditional Southwest Airlines style they entertained the passengers with "Positively Outrageous Service" (or, POS), which inspired one individual to approach Southwest Airlines to help provide the same type of experience for some underprivileged children in the local Phoenix area.  The experience for these children was something they never forgot; their first airplane flight, all donated by Southwest and inspired by an anonymous Flight Crew. Fast forward nearly ten years later, and that experience was again the inspiration for an event in December 2006 for 600 children and 300 spouses of military members rw-usmc.JPGwho had been killed since 9/11. The event was called the Snowball Express, and it is chronicled at snowballexpress.org where the children and widows speak of this life-changing event.  An all expenses-paid weekend at Disneyland and other attractions generated new, more pleasant memories for childrenrw-facepainting.JPG who had lost a parent in the armed forces. Here are some of their impressions: "I am brought to tears when I remember my weekend spent with The Snowball Express.  I know without the backing of Southwest Airlines, the event may not have been possible.  I don't even know how to say THANK YOU in a way for you to understand how deep your support is still felt in my spirit.  I believe I may be living on a little bit of that "Southwest Spirit" that I've heard about." "Last Christmas was our first one without Michael, and because of you and the Snowball express, our tears were much lighter and we have wonderful memories of 2006. I will never be able to put into words the impact Snowball Express had on our family." "My husband had only been gone two months, and I had not seen my son smile since the day we got the news. Standing in line at Disneyland, he looked at me and said, 'Mom, I guess we can still have fun even though Dad is gone.' You all made that possible." Southwest Airlines, along with many other corporate sponsors rw-gathering.JPGhelped fly many of these families to Orange County last year and again will help bring 1,500 children and spouses to Disneyland for an all expenses-paid weekend November 30 through December 3.  I'm proud to work for both organizations that are changing lives and offering hope to so many.  The Freedom to Fly is not just a slogan for these families; they have sacrificed more than most to allow us all the Freedoms we so enjoy.  One Southwest Crew + "POS" service = 1000+ (and counting) lives that have been changed, not bad for a "little ole Texas airline." If you wish to join Southwest Airlines and other corporations in helping make these dreams come true, please visit www.snowballexpress.org and learn more. Thanks to Southwest Airlines and the generosity of their Employees for helping!
5 Comments
Francisco_Delga1
Not applicable
What a touching story. While other airlines may be known for their inflight TV, Southwest will always be known for having employees with huge hearts. Thank you for continuing to support the military and their families. USS BLOG BOY
Carol_p1
Not applicable
No matter how one feels about this war, we have to separate the war from the warriers. Thank you SWA employees for providing this wonderful service to those who have suffered most!
ute
Not applicable
Recently I've moved to Yuma. The air transportation from and to Yuma is real bad and very spotty , most people have drive to Phoenix, Tucson or San Diego to catch flights. That adds another 2 - 4 hours travel time. Hopefully your airline is considering in the near future to serve Yuma. It will be well worth for your airline. Thank s
Not applicable
[...] see posts from a wide range of contributors in very different jobs at Southwest (Communications, Captains, Executives, flight attendants and mechanics).  It makes for a much more interesting read and [...]
Marcinda
Not applicable
My daughter and grandchildren are part of the Snowball Express this weekend and I can't say how much I appreciate all that is being done. They have given the person they love most to secure freedom for us all and it is good to see them given some pleasant time together to heal. Thank you!