Aviators are building base for rescue work

Date: July 7, 1984
Location: St. Louis, MO
Newspaper: St. Louis Globe-Democrat

Wings of Hope Inc., a St. Louis-based humanitarian aviation organization, will construct a new hangar at the Spirit of St. Louis Airport to serve as the group’s world headquarters, Joseph G. Fabick, the organization’s president, announced Friday.

Work on the 6,400-square-foot hangar will begin this summer and should, be finished by December, he said. The $200,000 hangar project will include offices, meeting rooms, shops and storage space for the organization that provides air transportation and radio communication equipment to needy people in remote regions of the world.

Wings of Hope has arranged to lease a 1.4-acre site for the hangar at the St. Louis County-owned airport in Chesterfield, Fabick said. The $5,000-a-year lease will be sent to the County Council later this month for final approval, he added.

The organization, which was founded in 1962 by a group of professionals and businessmen in St. Louis, repairs and modifies airplanes so that the group can give priority service to mercy air missions, such as medical rescue and disaster evacuations, Fabick said.

D. Robert Werner, hangar committee chairman for Wings of Hope, said the hanger will help the not-for-profit organization to operate its charitable work more efficiently across the globe.

Until the new hangar is ready, Wings of Hope will continue to rent space at various airports. Volunteer mechanics will continue to modify airplanes to enable pilots to land and take off in remote areas that do not have improved air strips, Fabick said.

In addition to the hangar, the new site at the Spirit airport will have tie-down
space for 10 aircraft, he said.

“This is a big step for us,” said William D. Edwards, the organization’s executive director. “The new hangar is going to help us usher in another generation of service for the program.”

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