The Flight Chaplain role is no longer a concept but a reality. The first ever Flight Chaplain in the United Stated was hired in 2003 by Flight for Life Colorado, a large, regional air medical transport program. Within a few short months, the Flight Chaplain had become an integral and valued member of the team. She flew and traveled with crews on all aircraft at all bases. Four years later, in 2007, that same Flight Chaplain, Amelie Buchanan, was honored to present at the Air Medical Transport Conference (AMTC). The response by flight nurses, paramedics, pilots and others in attendance, was overwhelming. The need for flight chaplains was obvious then, and still is.
Shortly after that, Joe Love, seminary graduate, then serving as a Flight Nurse, contacted Flight Chaplain Buchanan. The dream was born. The next year at AMTC in 2008, they co-founded the Association of Professional Flight Chaplains (APFC). In December, 2008, Flight Chaplain Buchanan left her position to serve and work for APFC full time.
Since then APFC has grown and is thriving. The APFC’s first Charter Flight Program members thank all those who gave their time and skills to APFC in the beginning. Likewise, the Board of Directors is grateful to all of APFC’s Charter Flight Program members – Flight for Life Colorado, Denver, CO; AirLife Denver, Denver, CO; the Air Methods Corporation, Englewood, CO; Florida Flight 1, Orlando, FL; and CareFlite, Fort Worth, Dallas, TX, for believing in the Mission and Vision of APFC during its start-up years. These organizations will be recognized always for their vision and support.