Friday, June 12, 2009…Reverend Franklin Graham (son of the Reverend Billy Graham...pictured above right with Tom Hamilton), arrived at Quest early this morning to take delivery of KODIAK s/n 0015 for Samaritan's Purse, an international relief and evangelism organization that provides physical and spiritual aid to victims of war, poverty, natural disaster, and disease. Graham's recent business has put him in the national spotlight as he speaks to the world through major news networks to request prayer for the American journalists held (at the time of this writing) by North Korea and urges a return to peace talks to enable resolution and ongoing humanitarian aid with North Korea. These are serious issues and that connection puts a context to our work. These are the kinds of hands we enable.
Normally we'd tell you what the weather was like as Rev. Graham took delivery...how the June air seemed to bring an early summer. We'd mention the warm smiles on the faces of our crew as they watched this aircraft -- built by their own hands -- delivered into the capable hands of Rev. Graham and Samaritan's Purse.
This has always been our core mission. It’s what we set out to do. And as s/n 0015 lifts off and banks east we’re starting to get used to this.
But it isn’t any less extraordinary because of that, actually, to us it's more so. We deliver the most capable tool we can build so that our clients can overcome their greatest challenges...and, in many cases, help those whose lives are most challenged. At Quest, selling airplanes isn't just about building aircraft; it's about empowering clients and building a stronger sense of world kinship through and with them.
Today, we're delivering aircraft at a rate of almost three per month. We've sent 15 aircraft into the field to tackle nearly every environment imaginable. Each of these aircraft will touch scores of people. Like all KODIAKs, the stunning black and yellow Samaritan's Purse aircraft looks like it was built to do something special. And, like all KODIAKs, it was. This one flies with XM Weather, Stormscope, Skywatch and dual G1000's with synthetic vision. It's a lofty package designed to overcome real world obstacles. For 0015 the course is set first to North Carolina and then to Alaska, but we hear it may ultimately wind up working in Africa. Frankly, the future is unpredictable and no one's exactly sure where it's going or exactly when. We just know it's going to be put to work when and where it's needed most. And suddenly it strikes us…that's exactly what every KODIAK is built to do.