Guy Gervais in Quebec for a while

Posted on 12 September 2001

Categories: News

Guy Gervais, the head pilot of Avions Sans Frontières (ASF), returned from the Democratic Republic of Congo after completing six months at the controls of his Cessna 206.

With an average of 55 hours of flying time per month, ASF is able to carry persons, to support educa-tional work and to transport equipment purchased in Uganda, such as photocopying machines, computers, television sets and satellite telephones. Guy rejoices that although “a year ago, the Congolese of the region had put their watches back one hundred years, now, thanks to the humanitarian flights of ASF and to modern technology, they are living in tune with Canada and Europe”. He says this gives a new dimension to their education and their community lives. During his latest six months in Congo, Guy again had his share of adventures. He found himself for instance at the centre of a tropical storm with only 15 minutes of fuel; he finally found a break in the clouds and managed to land at Aru. Without that bit of luck, he had a choice among a mined runway, two landing strips under the control of soldiers who are always ready to cause trouble, and landing in Uganda with the possibility of being fined and having his aircraft confiscated. The chief pilot of ASF remains enthusiastic in spite of such adventures. “I believe that the magnet that draws me to the bush and the jungle in a country at war is the hope and satisfaction of collaborating in the Congolese miracle”, he says. “Congolese men and women,” he adds, “are proud of themselves and know that they have enough brains and courage to emerge satisfactorily out of this chaos”.

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