April 20th, 2018 Todd was able to combine his instrument currency flight training with our 64th Pilots N Paws mission. Piper Ann Hodges was the flight instructor performing the instrument proficiency check for Todd. Todd flew from Moontown airport to Huntsville International and picked up Piper Ann. Weather was windy and bumpy while performing various maneuvers and shooting instrument approaches. They shot an instrument approach into Walker County airport where they were scheduled to pick up a lab mix named Ozzie and continue flight training to Troy Alabama.
There was another lab pup, Kaci, that needed a lift. So flight training was suspended as Piper Ann switched roles from flight instructor to puppy caretaker and held the puppy for the duration of the flight to Troy. Piper Ann enjoyed the pup, Todd enjoyed the break from training, and the dogs enjoyed the smooth air at the higher altitudes. The Walker County to Troy leg was a good flight.
From there, the dogs caught ground transportation to Florida. Todd and Piper Ann returned to Huntsville and completed flight training. It was a very successful and productive day.
As with all freedom flights, this one was particularly complex and chaotic (organized chaos), but ended very successful without much deviation or delay. We appreciate how hard Pilots N Paws staff, the volunteers, and the flight crews work facilitating constantly changing dogs, destinations, times, and weather.
Unfortunately many others aren’t as lucky, and as you all know, the only answer to this devastating issue is to spay/neuter/rescue. All of these dogs are really sweet, and they deserve to be curled up on the living room floor at night not tossed out like trash.
Todd and Mary Brooks
Piper Ann Hodges