Wings for Life takes flight

Gala ball cel­e­brat­ing 90 years puts the fun into fundrais­ing

The Western Star - - RURALWEEKL­Y -

THE Royal Fly­ing Doctor Ser­vice (RFDS) cen­tral op­er­a­tions re­cently cel­e­brated 90 years in style with its an­nual Wings for Life Ball.

The event is a vi­tal fundraiser for the im­por­tant out­back ser­vice, and proved a re­sound­ing suc­cess ac­cord­ing to RFDS cen­tral op­er­a­tions CEO John Lynch.

“The Wings for Life Birthday Ball was an in­cred­i­ble cel­e­bra­tion of 90 years of sav­ing lives, with 950 guests rais­ing a record $280,000 (net) – a re­mark­able re­sult,” Mr Lynch said.

“These vi­tal funds will di­rectly ben­e­fit the RFDS’ cap­i­tal-rais­ing pro­gram for the re­place­ment of its fly­ing in­ten­sive care units so that they can con­tinue to per­form 100 flights across Aus­tralia ev­ery day.”

The event in­cluded on­line and live auc­tions, with the item fetch­ing the high­est bid on the night be­ing an RFDS Pi­la­tus PC-12 (air­craft) 90th an­niver­sary spe­cial edi­tion pro­pel­ler blade, rais­ing $11,800 for the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

Other items up for auc­tion in­cluded travel ad­ven­tures to far flung quar­ters of the world such as Hong Kong and Antarc­tica, along with fine jew­ellery and leisure items.

The birthday cel­e­bra­tions con­tinue, with the RFDS Queens­land sec­tion to run its Wings for Life black tie event – A Night Un­der the Stars Gala – on July 28 at The Royal In­ter­na­tional Con­ven­tion Cen­tre, RNA Show­grounds, to fea­ture a swag of Aus­tralian artists such as Paul Kelly, Cold Chisel, and INXS.

For tick­ets to the Queens­land event, call the RFDS on (07) 3852 7519, or visit rfds­gala.eventbrite.com. au.

PHO­TOS: CONTRIBUTE­D

WINGS FOR LIFE: Long-serv­ing RFDS cen­tral op­er­a­tions CEO John Lynch (cen­tre) cel­e­brated the 90th birthday of the RFDS with his fam­ily (from left) Daniel, Jes­sica, Anita, Brid­gette and Jake Lynch.

RFDS staff mem­bers Ge­orge An­to­niou (left) and Richard Tan­ner vol­un­teered to help make the night a hit.

Neil and Sue Dunn of Dunns Earth­mov­ing of­fered the high­est bid of the evening’s fundrais­ing auc­tion events, and are now the proud own­ers of an RFDS Pi­la­tus PC-12 (air­craft) 90th an­niver­sary spe­cial edi­tion pro­pel­ler blade.

Fred and Sarah Howard of DogRidge Win­ery soak up the at­mos­phere at the RFDS 90th an­niver­sary Wings for Life Ball.

Rep­re­sent­ing Elders – a ma­jor spon­sor of the RFDS Wings for Life Ball – were Wally and Kate Bell.

CEO ex­ec­u­tive as­sis­tant Jodie Pow­ell catches up with for­mer gen­eral man­ager busi­ness de­vel­op­ment Ol­lie Kra­tou­nis, who spent 18 years with the RFDS.

Abbey Baker and Ge­orgie Jame­son at the RFDS cen­tral op­er­a­tions Wings for Life Ball.

RFDS cen­tral op­er­a­tions deputy CEO Tony Vaughan and his wife Trudy.

En­joy­ing the RFDS Wings for Life Ball were (from left) Jono and Kirby Craw­ford, and Kate and Char­lie Pater­son.

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