ACI Jet Hosts Make-A-Wish Children at John Wayne Airport

June 4, 2019
ACI Jet recently hosted local children from “Make-A-Wish” Foundation at its John Wayne Airport/ Orange County (KSNA) FBO location.

ACI Jet, a world-class FBO providing corporate aircraft management, charter, maintenance and ground handling services recently hosted local children from “Make-A-Wish” Foundation at its John Wayne Airport/ Orange County (KSNA) FBO location, partnering with International Jet Aviation to provide a day filled with aviation experiences otherwise inaccessible to most. The nonprofit Make-A-Wish Foundation provides lifechanging wishes for children diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses, through its many partnerships with local individuals and companies throughout the United States, such as ACI Jet and International Jet Aviation.

Celebrities for the day, the children and their families were treated to a catered lunch, tours of the FBO, hangars, and aircraft, plus enjoyed “Goodie Bags” filled with treats. The Orange County Fire and Sherriff Departments also participated, and provided fire truck rides and furry friends in the form of bomb sniffing dogs. It was Dream Chaser 5 however, International Jet of Colorado’s rainbow-colored Lear 35, that was the highlight of the day for the children. Treated to cockpit tours and an unforgettable flight experience aboard Dream Chaser 5 over Orange County and the California coast, International Jet has provided flight experiences for children around the country for almost three decades, many of them from the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Though ACI Jet is a frequent host of charitable events at their FBO locations, the Make-A-Wish Foundation event was the first of its kind since ACI began operations at John Wayne Airport in 2017. Says Joe Daichendt, Senior Vice President, FBOs for ACI Jet, “Our track record shows that wherever we have a facility, we become an active part of that community. It is who we are. Our partnership with International Jet and Make-A-Wish was extraordinary for us, and allowed the kids to have a hands-on experience and be awed by the wonders of aviation.”

While families of the Make-A-Wish Foundation children attended the day’s activities, the flights on Dream Chaser 5 were limited to only the Make-A-Wish kids, providing a welcome distraction for the children from otherwise daily reminders about a rare illness they face, or an upcoming medical treatment. In short, it provided something unique, memorable and fun - a rare treat in the life of a child with a life-threatening condition. And, as Daichendt notes “Most importantly, it allowed them to just be kids.”