AAG Community Events Provide Opportunities to Give Back
As a premier provider of helicopter services in the northeast, Associated Aircraft Group looks for ways to utilize our unique capabilities and resources to give back to the community. Whether it is helping young people achieve or assisting children in need, AAG community events give our team members a chance to connect with and benefit the people in locations we serve.
Flying to Help Children in Need
We partner with Patient Air Lift Services providing flights for children with illnesses to receive medical treatment and enhance the quality of their lives. A recent trip helped a Virginia boy receive treatment for bone cancer at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. Another flight took a 12-year-old cancer survivor and her brother to eastern Long Island, to participate in a camp for children diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses and their families. In addition to the standard arts-and-crafts activities of other camps, the Kids Need More Camp Adventure also features shows, concerts and carnivals to buoy spirits.
Aviation Community Foundation Students See Manhattan
AAG supports the Aviation Community Foundation’s Student Aviation Expedition in New York. Its mission: bringing students from underserved communities together, connecting them with peers and making valuable relationships with aviation industry leaders. These success-orientated achievers participated in a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math competition, with the winners experiencing a helicopter flight over Manhattan, courtesy of AAG.
Photo courtesy of Ron Kaplan/ACF
Girls Exploring Tomorrow's Technology (GETT) Stem Expo Event
AAG supported the 2018 Girls Exploring Tomorrow’s Technology GETT Expo March 17 in Phoenixville, Pa. Sikorsky's CSS Vice President Audrey Brady opened the event by arriving in an S-76 from AAG and addressed attendees upon landing. Sikorsky, AAG's parent company, was a premier sponsor for this STEM event. More than 800 girls were in attendance and many were able to tour the helicopter and speak with an AAG pilot.
AAG and PALS (Patient Airlift Services) Team Up Once Again
When Beverly was ready to head from her appointment at WTC Health Program - Clinical Center of Excellence at Mount Sinai to Westchester County Airport to meet her pilot for her return flight home to VA, she was surprised to get a call from PALS saying that her transportation to the airport would not be provided by car, as it usually is, but in a helicopter instead thanks to Associated Aircraft Group! She had a wonderful time flying over NYC.
Pilot for A Day With AAG, Sikorsky and The Make-A-Wish Foundation
AAG was beyond thrilled when Sikorsky reached out to ask for their assistance in making one young boy’s wish come true. William Beyer, a 6-year-old with a rare congenital heart malformation, recently asked to go “somewhere they build planes.” Different areas of Lockheed Martin were approached, but it was decided that Sikorsky and their helicopters would be the best fit. Which is where AAG comes in, with the S-76 being one of the safest and most comfortable helicopters in the market, Sikorsky thought it would be a great opportunity to give William and his family a ride they would remember. Sikorsky pilots, Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of AAG, Ray Altieri, and the communications team all made sure William and his family had a first-hand experience of what goes on at the Sikorsky Plant in Stratford, CT. AAG, subsidiary of Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company, was more than happy to help with this special day.
9th Annual Manufacturing Career Day
On October 5, 2018 AAG assisted its parent company, Lockheed Martin with the 9th Annual Manufacturing Career Day in Salina, NY. Lockheed Martin Syracuse had a large presence at the event as they promoted careers in STEM and manufacturing with Lockheed Martin. The day was orchestrated by The Manufacturers Association of Central New York (MACNY). An AAG S-76 was on static display for more than 400 students to view, tour and speak with AAG pilots.
AAG Supports Sikorsky Stem Challenge Kickoff Event
On November 2nd, AAG supported the 2018-2019 Sikorsky STEM Challenge Kickoff Event at Chester Airport in Connecticut. Students from surrounding schools participate in the challenge, shown here are some from Fairfield Prep. AAG is proud to support our parent company, Sikorsky Aircraft, with any event supporting STEM education amongst students.
Lockheed Martin University Day At UCONN
AAG supported the Sikorsky and Lockheed Martin teams at UCONN this past September, with the university's first ever Lockheed Martin University Day. More than 50 Lockheed Martin UCONN alumni, Corporate University Relations, Engineering & Technology, Manufacturing Operations, and Sikorsky Fire Department employees showcased Lockheed Martin careers and technologies on the Storrs, Conn., campus Sept. 27. Some students were able to go for a ride in AAG's S-76 and others were able to talk with Lockheed employees, see a flight simulator, and take part in educational seminars.
AAG Stops by The 2019 GETT (Girls Exploring Tomorrow's Technology) Stem Expo Event
Saturday, March 23 was the annual GETT Stem Expo Event which took place at Phoenixville Area Middle School in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Last year, AAG brought in an S-76 for display, and was able to once again bring the same excitement this year. More than 1,000 girls witnessed the Sikorsky VIP aircraft land on the school grounds, and for many of them, it was their favorite part of the day. AAG Pilot, Kim Barwick, and Sikorsky Commercial Systems and Services VP, Audrey Brady, flew the aircraft that afternoon. When asked what her favorite part of the day was, a young female student replied, "this helicopter," while sitting next to Barwick and another fellow student in the back of the luxury chopper.
Love Takes Flight Aboard a Sikorsky S-76
Vincent Scafa, Sikorsky Security Officer, and Jessica Luczkow, Compliance Manager, both based out of Sikorsky's Stratford, Conn. facility, recently got engaged on an AAG S-76 ride from Bridgeport, Conn. to East Hampton, N.Y. The two have been together for four years, and Vincent popped the question "on the fly," he said, over the Long Island Sound. Catching an Uber after their flight, they celebrated together with their families in Port Jefferson.
Sikorsky VIP Aircraft Assists in Life-Saving Mission
What started as a hot summer afternoon quickly became a pivotal search and rescue mission for Associated Aircraft Group (AAG) crewmembers, Captain Mike Wright and mechanics Nick Pacifico and Tom Lewis. AAG was performing maintenance on a Sikorsky S-76 helicopter at 2:30 p.m. on July 19 when the crew heard a declared in-flight emergency over the radio. A four-passenger Piper fixed wing aircraft had crash-landed less than two miles short of the Hudson Valley Regional Airport. Instinctively, and relying on their vast experience, the team immediately sprang into action, upon receiving aircraft control tower approval, to leverage their Sikorsky helicopter’s capabilities and start searching for the downed aircraft in a heavily-wooded area. There was no hesitation for Lewis, Pacifico and Wright, whose workday had almost ended before they learned of the unfolding mishap. AAG has been a proud member of the Hudson Valley and Dutchess County community for more than 20 years, contributing in many ways, from assisting the Sheriff’s Department, to donating helicopter flights, to hosting charity events for local organizations. AAG exclusively operates and maintains an S-76 helicopter fleet and, in this case, seized the opportunity to deploy the aircraft for a mission beyond its main VIP transportation role. Wright flew both Lewis and Pacifico, who were preparing the AAG S-76 for a functional check flight, over to the general area where the Piper had crashed. It only took them a short time to spot the aircraft and land as closely as possible to the crash site. Lewis and Pacifico immediately jumped out and went searching for the victims. A family of four, traveling from Ohio to Rhode Island, were on board and stuck inside the aircraft. Twenty minutes passed as the AAG mechanics did everything they could to help recover the family from the wreck before paramedics arrived at the scene. Those injured that day certainly could have realized an entirely different fate, had the AAG crew not responded as swiftly and effectively as they did.
Camp Sikorsky Gets a Surprise Visit From an S-76
Camp Sikorsky is held at the Lockheed Martin Stratford site each year for Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts. More than 400 students and scout leaders are invited to the facility to participate in the annual event. AAG brought in an S-76D Model this year to give the children an up-close and personal look at the inside of one of Sikorsky’s VIP helicopters. Ray Altieri, Chief Operating Officer of AAG, flew into the plant on the D-model, the latest aircraft in the S-76 legacy. AAG is proud to be involved with events such as these, providing helicopter support to its parent companies Sikorsky and Lockheed Martin. Camp Sikorsky is STEM-focused, similar to many other events AAG has supported Sikorsky and Lockheed Martin with in the past.
Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 170 Gets a Special Ride in the S-76
The Veterans of Foreign Wars is a non-profit organization dedicated to the support of our veterans and their families to the prospective communities. The VFW Post 170 hosted the 2nd Annual Corey Ingram Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament on Saturday, August 17, 2019, at College Hill Golf Course in Poughkeepsie, NY, to help raise funds for deserving Poughkeepsie High School Graduates. Petty Officer 1st Class Corey G. Ingram, is a Poughkeepsie native and a 2006 PHS graduate. Corey served in the U.S. Navy for nine years and was an active member of VFW Post 170. Corey died on August 25, 2017 while aboard the USS John McCain in Singapore.
AAG supported the outing by donating a helicopter flight to the auction, which raised over $14,000 for Poughkeepsie High School Area Students. One of the winners included a Vietnam Veteran, Nate Grant. On a sunny day in October, the winners of the donation came to the Hudson Valley Regional Airport for their ride in the S-76. Lou Rusekas, one of the winners said of his experience, "it is something I will remember for the rest of my life." The group pictured here are family members and friends of VFW Post 170.
Easterseals Connecticut Crystal Ball Auction Winners Go for a Ride in the S-76
Marilynn Vargas and her family were the lucky recipients of a donated flight to the 2019 Crystal Ball, hosted by Easterseals, a nonprofit that provides a wide range of medical and vocational rehabilitation services designed for individuals of all ages with any type of disabling condition. Easterseals has gone beyond the traditional role of a rehabilitation agency by adding manufacturing and service businesses that directly train and employ individuals with disabilities. The group arrived at our Bridgeport location on a sunny afternoon in December. Despite the chill, our pilots were ready to give Marilynn and her family a ride to remember. Departing from Bridgeport in the Sikorsky S-76, the group was in for a treat with clear skies on the radar. Having aircraft based at the Sikorsky Memorial Airport in Bridgeport has made trips into New York more direct and cost efficient for AAG. For this donated flight, pilots flew over the Long Island Sound for scenic views of the water. Getting the true VIP treatment, Marilynn noted the 'amazing experience in a beautiful helicopter,' and mentioned that her youngest loved it 'especially all the snacks!' AAG donates on average 12 flights per year to various charity organizations and events in the surrounding communities.
Associated Aircraft Group, Inc.
Hudson Valley Regional Airport
32 Griffith Way
Wappingers Falls, NY 12590