Flight Log

Resources and Stories from Angel Flight West.

A Veteran Gets His Voice

<em>Command Pilot Mark Donnelly flew Bill and his wife<em> <em>home after Bills reconstructive surgery<em>

On Friday November 10, Army veteran William “Bill” Shammy will leave the VA Hospital in Palo Alto with something he hasn’t had in 10 years: a voice.

Bill lost his voice to throat cancer when doctors had to remove his larynx. Now he’s undergoing reconstructive surgery. With his wife Matilda, he’ll fly home to Espanola, New Mexico, courtesy of Angel Flight West, whose volunteer pilots provide free air transportation to people who need to access non-emergency medical care far from home.

The couple’s youngest child, Kenny, never got to hear his father’s voice. He passed away at age seven, when a ruptured appendix was misdiagnosed as the flu.

Bill had a big smile on his face when they were wheeling him into surgery, and the family is excited to see – and hear –  him  when he wakes up. 

“I can’t wait to see the looks on our grandkids’ faces,” Matilda says. “And there’s no way this could have happened without the Angel Flight West pilots.”

For media inquiries, interviews, and additional information, please contact Jessica Hayes at [email protected].” 

Angel Flight West’s volunteer pilots provide free medical transportation to help passengers reach their health care, as well as flights for other humanitarian purposes, such as veterans taking part in therapeutic programs. This year, Angel Flight West celebrates two milestones: 40 years of service and our 100,000th mission. To learn more about Angel Flight West, visit www.angelflightwest.org.

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