Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Beacon Awards: Cherokee Nation Businesses Inc

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Beacon Awards: Cherokee Nation Businesses Inc

Article excerpt

After reading an article about the Veterans Airlift Command, Al Cherry knew it was something he wanted to get his team at the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma involved with to show the tribe's support of the military.

The Veterans Airlift Command, or VAC, is a nonprofit organization that provides free air transportation to post-9/11 combat wounded and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes through a national network of volunteer aircraft owners and pilots.

Since joining the program four years ago, Choctaw Nation has flown 71 missions - equating to about 1,120 volunteer hours and 94,000 miles. The Choctaw Nation ranks third out of air service providers for the number of missions flown for VAC.

Cherry is director of flight operations at the Choctaw Nation and one of three Choctaw Nation pilots, including Quentin McLarry and John Wesley.

"It's a very emotional thing for us, but (one) with a lot of satisfaction," said Cherry, who himself is a veteran. …

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