Wish of a Lifetime
Most recently, we teamed up with Wish of a Lifetime organization to make one special lady’s wish come true. Featured in the current issue of PEOPLE magazine, this moving story describes 104-year-old Ruth Barnum’s wish to be reunited with her two sisters, both over 100 years of age, after a decade apart. Despite Ruth’s health conditions and special needs, she was determined to rekindle with her sisters.
That’s when Wish of a Lifetime received the request and reached out to XOJET. Wish of a Lifetime’s mission is to foster respect and appreciation for seniors by fulfilling life-enriching wishes—and that’s what we set out to do for Ruth.
At XOJET, we do our absolute best to accommodate each trip and fully understand some flyers will require special assistance. When it came to planning Ruth’s 1,500-mile journey from Tulsa to Providence, Renee Aivaliklis, Senior Director of Customer Service, provides an insight into this flight and the pre-planning required to get Ruth—safely—to her destination. Renee worked closely with a team of Operations experts including Maintenance Controllers, Trip Managers, Aircraft Schedulers, and our Chief Pilot to meet each request.
The special flight took off from Richard Lloyd Jones Jr. Airport (RVS), where Ruth and 7 other passengers including medical assistants and family members, accompanied her throughout the trip. To accommodate Ruth’s needs, a special wheelchair lift was commissioned to assist Ruth with boarding and deplaning, designed specifically to ascent a business jet. Our operations team sought the assistance of local EMT and Fire Department for added assurance. And lastly, our Pilots prepared a special route, pin-pointing key diversion airports in the unlikely event of an emergency.
Once safely in Providence, it was nothing but smiles for the reunited sisters, which for Ruth, never thought would ever happen again. Sitting next to her sister Rubye Cox, 110, and Rose Shloss, 101, Ruth says she felt “like Cinderella.”
Check out photos of Ruth before departure in Tulsa along with a snapshot of her long-awaited reunion with her sisters. Be sure to read the entire story at people.com.