Veterans Airlift Command

Rating: 4.97 stars   138 reviews

Issues:

Location: 5775 Wayzata Blvd Ste 700 Saint Louis Park MN 55416 USA

Mission: The Veterans Airlift Command provides free air transportation to wounded warriors, veterans and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes through a national network of volunteer aircraft owners and pilots. Our priority is on the veterans of Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan). As capacity allows, our mission will expand to serve veterans of other conflicts.
Geographic areas served: National
Write a Review

More Info

EIN 20-4567769
952-582-2911
Invite people to share their experience with this nonprofit!

Promote This Nonprofit

GreatNonprofits badges allow you to raise awareness of your favorite nonprofits on your own web sites!

Review this charity on
GreatNonprofits

Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

This organization headed by one of my heors Walt Fricke has been a life saver for many w wounded and his family. I just cannot say enough about Veterans Airlift Command and hope all get a chance to donate. You will not regret it. Much love and Angel wing hugs to VAC wingtip to wingtip. Patti Patton-Bader Soldiers Angels

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The have helped get wounded heroes to their families and more.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-3-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I cannot even start to say how thankful I am for what your organization has done for me and my family not only once but twice!! Every piolt I flew with was courteous and thankful for my service. Never once did I have to carry any luggage to or from the aircraft. Also all information was provided for me well in advance. Again I thank you on behalf of my family and myself. Hoorah!!! Sgt Hill USA Wounded Warrior

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

being flown home with professional pilots.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Getting over the fear of flying as funny as it may seem since I am an airborne soldier.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Professional,courteous and helpful.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

You could only make it better for your organization and really I don't see how it could get any better ya'll are great.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I've been blessed to fly three missions for the VAC. It is very gratifying to know that by serving, you are directly supporting the healing process for wounded warriors. VAC is very well organized. The protocols for arranging a flight are very straightforward. The web site is a big help in facilitating communication with passengers. I can't think of anything I would suggest VAC do differently.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing the joy in a mother's eyes as I brought her boy home for Thanksgiving.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

work to figure out how to spread the word so more vets and families used the service.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

serving those who have served.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

focused on helping wounded warriors heal.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

spread the word even greater throughout the military and care agencies regarding the services available to veterans and their families.

Ways to make it better...

I could have kept from crying tears of gratitude and joy. Well, maybe not.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

funding for G&A and governmental opposition to private aviation.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I'm proud to be a VAC volunteer.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-6-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

It was a great honor for me to be able to assist this war hero. I hope to be able to carry out many more missions for the Veterans Airlift Command.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

helpful, knowledgeable and courteous every step of the way.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I was fortunate enough to be on board one of our Veteran Lifts. My 8 and 9 year old boys went with me to pick up a soldier in New York and take him to Tampa. I made sure my boys had a little sensitivity training to what they might see (wheelchair, loading, etc.). I had no idea what an impact this lift has made on my life and a long lasting impact with my children. They know what it means to be a hero but more importantly they learned how to be his hero and friend. They know what it means that he made a sacrifice for them. They probably remember most how much fun it was playing with him and he with them. It was like an uncle they had never met and he himself was a big kid. Laughter and friendship filled the aircraft and once we landed they were transformed into his personal travel companions. Your children should have exposure to this type of philantrophy. It's a trip we will not soon forget.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Have it's own airline just for veterans :)

Ways to make it better...

The website is not the easiest to negotiate while entering a trip

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

Was this review helpful? 
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I am a social worker at a VAMC and have used Veterans Airlift Command several times to send injured Veterans and Servicemembers home to visit family and friends as many of them are far away from family while they are being treated for injuries. In my experience, Veterans Airlift Command has been very accomodating to my patients' wishes and needs. Many of the patients have also expressed not only enjoying their trip home, but enjoying the flight and the pilots. Your kindness and compassion toward the Veterans and Servicemembers we treat is much appreciated.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Appreciation the veterans and servicemembers express in having been able to visit family/friends.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Expand it.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Kindess and compassion of the staff.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Awesome

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Connect more families separated by tragedy

Ways to make it better...

Nothing

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Probably funding???

One thing I'd also say is that...

Thank you!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-12-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

Veterans Airlift Command (VAC) does a great job of coordinating air transportation between Veterans who need help and private/corporate pilots who have volunteered to provide free trips. I have flown four missions, the most recent taking a Marine with neurological problems due to a brain injury from Camp LeJune to a specialized center in Atlanta, the Shepherd Center. A grueling 6 hour ground trip, or a potentially confusing commercial flight with two or three stops became a relaxed, point to point two hour flight. Other missions included getting an Soldier home from the hospital in time for his daughter's graduation, and taking the wife of a service member to Walter Reed to be with her husband during treatment. As a combat Veteran myself, I understand all too well where the gaps are in the system, and VAC helps bridge one of these gaps.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

great. Communications between hospital staff, the pilot, and the Veteran were extremely well handled.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand the awareness of the services and mission, as well as have back up commercial transportation when general aviation can't fly due to weather.

Ways to make it better...

the weather would cooperate!

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

lack of awareness of the availability of the service.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-3-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

As the case manager for the military outreach program at the Shepherd Center, Atlanta (the Share Initiative), I have had extremely positive experiences working with Veterans Airlift Command. They have assisted in flying veterans as well as active duty service members and their families to our TBI/ PTSD treatment program, and have also been very flexibile in developing transportation schedules to allow our clients to commute between our program and their homes if their treatment focus is the transition back into the home. This allows our clients to apply and practice routines and strategies acquired in our program into in their home environments and then provide feedback upon their return to treatment. Veteran's Airlift Command has been extremely flexible and has been able to assist us with rather complicated flight schedules and destinations (e.g., Atlanta to South Dakota) on short notice and free of charge to our clients. Our clients with PTSD appreciate not having to fly from large, busy airports on commercial airlines and have had very positive experiences with the personal attention of the Veterans Airlift Command Pilots.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

their flexibility, dedication and amazing ability to accommodate our program and client's needs.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very professional, caring and compassionate.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

My name is LT. Robert Jackson, Jr. and I utilized the VAC services during my stay at Walter Reed Medical Center for surgery during the month of Dec 09 and Jan 09. Quite simply they were a life saver. Because I ended up funding my own travel and lodging expenses because my command would not provide Cost TDY Orders, cash was limited and time was critical. I utilized the VAC service on 3 separate occassions saving me lodging expenses of approx $1,000.00. The staff and Management of VAC bent over backward to ensure my requests were met; twice on very short notice. The pilots were all very good and very professional, during the holiday season 7,000 miles away from family (in Germany)this was a GOD SEND!! Thanks. LT. Robert Jackson, Jr. LDO USN

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Being a passenger, my flight on average 3.5 to 4 hours depending on conditions.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Expand the services to include transcontinental flights. This would take some planning but one of these a month to a centralized location would be great.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Professionalism and committment to serve the warriors.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Exceptional!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Touch the lives of warriors in ways we can not imagine. Just the cost of loved ones traveling to and from the hospital from out of state to visit wounded warriors would help a great deal.

Ways to make it better...

N/A

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Funding

One thing I'd also say is that...

Keep them around, this is unbelievable during these harsh financial times.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Fellow VAC Pilot Roger and I took off from Big Bear City Airport for the 100 mile flight to San Diego arriving just before noon. We met Marine Corporal’s Christopher Lawrence and Brett Sobaski at the terminal. Each Marine sat right seat in our Cessnas doing a fantastic job navigating over Miramar Naval Air Station and March Air Reserve Base en route back to Big Bear. First impressions proved accurate throughout the weekend as these two shining examples of courage & patriotism reminded us of the thousands of men and women who risk their lives to keep our country free. Seventy-five community members came out to thank the Marines for the sacrifices they’ve made and injuries they’ve suffered to keep us free. With the Marine Hymn playing in the background, retired Marine Colonel Bill Alley choked back tears of pride as he presented the Marines with a decorated cake, thanking the soldiers for service to their country. A dozen other Marine Veterans in attendance were evidenced by utterances of “Semper Fi” and “Oorah” heard throughout the afternoon. It was a proud day for all of us. Both Marines expressed thanks and appreciation to those in attendance, and again tears started to flow. A standing ovation was immediate and well deserved for these two amazing young men. This was a very special weekend for many people in Big Bear and Roger and I look forward to doing it again as VAC volunteers. Marine Corporals Christopher Lawrence and Brett Sobaski should be a reminder to all of us that there are hundreds more like them rehabilitating in Military Hospitals all round the country. They appreciate any show of support that you can give them. Stop by a hospital and visit, send a card or care package, take them out on the town or a short trip, everything is appreciated. Thanks to all the VAC volunteers and pilots for what they do. It does make a difference.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

meeting amazing young men who serve our Country.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-7-01

Was this review helpful?