Volunteer Spotlight: Tara Keating
1. Where are you from?
North End, Boston
2. What is something most people don’t know about you?
I used to be afraid of flying! Yikes!
3. What do you love about volunteering?
Seeing the obvious joy that it brings to the Dream Flyers’ faces as they are greeted when they first arrive at the airport, when they wave goodbye as the plane is taxiing for takeoff and the contagious, genuine smile after they land. It’s just…awesome! Indescribable!
4. How did you hear about ATC?
My fiance, Mike D’Alessandro, worked at Norwood Airport and became introduced to ATC through Gary.
5. What made you want to become a volunteer for ATC?
When Mike came home from work one day and told me about it, I knew it was an organization I wanted to somehow be involved in. An organization based on the wonder of flight and changing the lives of children…what is better than that?
6. How long have you been involved with ATC?
Nearly 4 years
7. Do you remember your first time volunteering for ATC? How was it?
I knew it wasn’t going to be my last time volunteering! I couldn’t wait to sign up for another day!
8. What is the most memorable experience you have had with ATC?
We had a young boy who was a dream flyer that had just beat cancer. Seeing his love for life and smile throughout the day was a memory I will never forget.
9. How do you think ATC is changing lives?
It gives children who are facing hardship a new perspective (literally). It is bringing them joy, hope and the realization that they can do anything (including co-piloting an airplane)!
10. Talk me through a typical Dream Flight Day you have with these kids
As a Flight Coordinator I am typically assigned to one Dream Flyer. When the Dream Flyer first arrives we greet him/her with cheers, signs, cowbells etc.! After the Dream Flyer plans their flight with their pilot, we head out to the airplane and the Dream Flyer assists the pilot in pre-flighting the aircraft. Post flight, we greet them when they land and head to our Pilot Lounge for a couple more surprises…their very own flight jacket and aviators!
11. Do you have any personal volunteering goals for 2017?
I would like to volunteer at nearly all Dream Flight days in 2017!
12. Is there something I haven’t asked you that you would like to say about ATC?
The spirit on dream flight day is contagious!
13. Describe ATC in one word