Honoring Our Fallen Members by Inspiring the Next Generation of Aviators

Attracting the best and the brightest to join the ranks of today’s professional airline pilots should be a priority. ALPA has long been and remains committed to fostering a safe, competitive, modern, and resilient air transportation system, which means creating a more diverse and inclusive workforce. And it is critical that the United States continues to stand as the global leader in aviation safety. 


But not everyone has an easy path to the flight deck. For years, ALPA has been committed to breaking down barriers and creating opportunities to foster a more diverse and inclusive aviation workforce that reflects the communities and customers our industry serves, while maintaining the highest safety standards in the world. As part of our commitment to ensuring the United States has even more qualified and diverse aviators in the pipeline for years to come, we are proud to support organizations that help make flight training more accessible.


Last year, to commemorate the lives of those lost in the 9/11 terrorist attacks, we donated $50,000 to each of the charitable foundations that were set up in honor of the four ALPA members who were killed in the attacks. In May, the LeRoy W. Homer Foundation, established in honor of F/O LeRoy Homer Jr., the first officer on United Flight 93, announced Raymond Caruso and Nick Mascio as the recent recipients of scholarships aimed to helping with the costs associated with obtaining a private pilot license.


“Being able to offer flight scholarships has been so rewarding,” said Melodie Homer, Foundation president. “It’s an opportunity to see these individuals’ dreams become a reality.” 


Caruso, a graduate of Robbinsville High School in New Jersey, expects to complete his private pilot’s license with help from the grant, and will be attending Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Fla. Mascio, a rising senior at Burlington Township High School, also in New Jersey, hopes to attend the U.S. Naval Academy and become a naval aviator.


We’re excited to see what the future has in store for these two deserving recipients of the Homer Foundation scholarships. We can’t think of a better way to honor the legacy of our fallen heroes than inspiring the next generation of pilots.
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