Recently, Make-A-Wish® granted my six-year old son Alex’s wish to go to the Florida theme parks. In addition to having his one true wish granted, Alex’s passion for airplanes resulted in a unique opportunity from Southwest Airlines who invited our family to participate in a special Southwest celebration to commemorate the new service out of Wichita, Kansas, making my son feel like the luckiest kid in the world.
He was at the heart of the celebration – and got to spend time with Southwest Pilots!
First, Alex was introduced to Scott Tatge of the Cessna Pilot Learning Center. He showed us a real flight simulator, and became Alex’s Co-Pilot as he “flew” round-trip from Wichita to McPherson, Kansas. Wearing his new Southwest Pilot cap, Alex flew over our house, his school, and the control tower at Mid-Continent Airport before landing safely.
Scott also arranged for us to take a tour of the actual control tower! Alex was able to watch planes take off and land with “real Pilot binoculars.” Excited about becoming a Pilot someday, Alex told Scott, “When you’re an old man, I hope I get to fly you somewhere on vacation.”
I am so grateful for the warmth and friendliness extended to my family in Wichita. Everyone treated Alex as a member of the family, and the generosity demonstrated by Make-A-Wish, FlightSafety International, and Southwest Airlines will truly remain in our hearts for a lifetime. Southwest’s alliance with Make-A-Wish is a testament to their purpose of connecting people to what’s most important in their lives.
It was a fabulous day best described by Alex when he said, “I hope other kids have as much fun on their wishes as I did today.” We sincerely thank you for a wonderful experience and unforgettable memories!
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