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EAA Welcomed Ford Tri-Motor Crew Last Weekend
By Kristy Busse, EAA 1016800; Manager, Air Tours
May 5, 2016 - In late April 2016, EAA Headquarters welcomed our year-round touring Ford Tri-Motor crew to Oshkosh for an all hands training session. We had more than 40 attendees who spent Friday, Saturday, and Sunday together for team building and training activities.
Over the course of three days the EAA maintenance team, EAA Air Tours team, and (most importantly) the Ford Tri-Motor crew accomplished ground school, flight training, and an all hands session that included a big focus on safety and volunteerism – two things this group continues to grow and excel in.
Saturday morning our pilots got an early start in the Weeks Hangar spending time with John Hopkins covering all the maintenance work that has been accomplished on NC8407 over the past nine months. Following that, Jack Pelton stopped in during ground school to say thank you to the pilots for the extensive outreach this group is able to accomplish while maintaining the highest level of professionalism and safety. Between classroom sessions, the pilot crew took advantage of the good weather to do as much flying as they could.
The most beneficial piece of these training events is getting everyone in the room to share experience and examples of challenges they have faced, along with unique solutions they have used. The communication and discussion amongst the group is the best learning and growth tool EAA staff and crews have!
We covered last year’s successes and numbers (which includes more 14,000 passengers flown!) as well as goals for this tour season. One theme focused on throughout the weekend was the tours mission and how it ties into EAA’s bigger picture on many levels. Dick Hanusa, EAA’s safety officer, covered emergency response plans and communication processes, which generated some great Q&A amongst the group. The all hands session wrapped up with a few of our volunteer leaders presenting. This included Chris Soucy, and EAA board member Cody Welch, who both focused on safety and highlighted and celebrated with the group their efforts to be the best ambassadors possible for EAA and Ford Tri-Motor Tour. EAA is honored to have touring crews that takes ownership of their program and hold each other accountable to the highest standards!
The day wrapped up with a quick group photo back at Weeks Hangar in front of the Tin Goose followed by an all hands dinner. We enjoyed good food and even better company! The stories each crew member has in their arsenal of experience are absolutely fantastic, and was the perfect way to spend our last evening together as a group. Sunday the crew started to pack up and head back home throughout the day. Sadly, the weekend absolutely flew by but we kept focused and covered a large amount of important material. We cannot thank the volunteer crew members enough for taking the time to be in Oshkosh with us!