April Newsletter

Our main activity for the first half of the month was serving as team members on a Walk to Emmaus weekend. This was special for us as we have only been able to serve on two of the six walks that have taken place since we got here. As always it was hard work and really made Cat tired but we feel it was worth it when we saw the faces of the people who were on the walk for the first time.

Click on picture for more photos...............................................................................................................Icicles at Emmaus.....

During the second half of the month Don was involved in flying youth from various villages to Spring Blasts for both the Covenant and Moravian churches. While flying the youth leaders from Anchorage out to Mountain Village we had to make an unplanned stop in Aniak to get fuel, instead of St Mary’s where we had planned to refuel, because of low weather in Mountain Village. Later that day as we were flying out to Hooper Bay, we talked on the radio to the St Mary’s people only to find out that we could not get fuel there because their supplies are so low. This quite often happens at this time of year because the summer

Click on picture for more photos................................................................Covenant Spring Blast................

barges have not arrived yet. After picking up the Hooper Bay kids we were able to go by way of Bethel which always has fuel. Had we not stopped in Aniak we would have ended up in St Mary’s with insufficient fuel to fly anywhere. We would have had to have fuel flown in – verrrrrry expensive. The high school/college aged leaders did a fine job again of leading the junior high school youth through many interesting and effective activities.

The Moravian Spring Blast took place the following weekend and involved three of our airplanes. We flew all day Thursday and part of Friday to bring a record 202 youth and adults to Quinhagak. We flew in people from Manakotak, Twin Hills, Togiak, Kwigillingok, Kongignak, Akiachak (2 runs), Nunapichak (2 runs), Napaskiak (2 runs), Tuntutuliak, Atmauthluaq (3 runs), Kwethluk (3 runs), Kipnuk, Scammon Bay, Tulusak (4 runs) and Kasigluk (2 runs). Interspersed were 6 fuel stops in Bethel. The four of us, Bob, Brian, Mark and myself spent the evenings at the Moravian Seminary in Bethel – there just wasn’t room in Quinhagak , a village of three hundred people that were hosting about that same number of visitors. The other hundred came in on commercial airlines.
Click on picture for more photos..............................................................................Moravian Spring Blast................

On Sunday we flew a few people home but most of them were flown home on Monday with the King Air and Caravan getting to Soldotna about 9 PM. The Navajo did not get home until midnight. Midway through the afternoon the Navajo had a flat nose tire on landing at Quinhagak. Bob & I in the King Air were only five minutes behind him and after landing we loaded some people in the back of the airplane to take most of the weight off the nose wheel. We attached a towrope to the nose gear and while two people held the nose tire off the ground we towed the aircraft to the ramp with a truck. Brian was flying by Bethel on his way into Quinhagak and we were able to contact him on the radio to divert him to Bethel where he was able to get a nose wheel & tire assembly from Grant Aviation. Within a hour the Navajo was fixed and flying again. Mark had one more run to fly after we left to go home and on this run he got another flat tire, this time on the ramp. He took the tire off and was able to fix the hole in the tube at the school workshop, however it did delay him again. On our second runs to Quinhagak all three planes ended up there at the same time. The transportation coordinator, Darren, sent out a truck with a message – “He was not sending out any more passengers until we came into the church to be recognized”. When we got there they told us we had to sing for everyone. The church was packed and kindly listened to our “joyful noise”. All in all it was a challenging and satisfying weekend.

Around MARC the new CASA arrived and the addition to the hanger, to give us a place to store cargo, has started.

Click on picture for more photos....................................................Around MARC................

Winter sure did hang around this year with several snow dumps. They didn’t stay long but they definitely did not produce spring like vistas.

Click on picture for more photos.......................................................Around Home...............