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East Valley Focus

VAN NUYS : Adoption of School Is Off to a Flying Start

October 07, 1994|MAKI BECKER

A formation of six vintage World War II AT-6 trainer planes flew above the playground at Gault Street Elementary School in Van Nuys on Thursday to the delight of more than 400 students who waved and cheered.

The flyover began a ceremony celebrating Van Nuys Airport's adoption of the elementary school.

As part of the city's Adopt-A-School program, the airport, located just minutes from the campus, will provide the school with learning materials about aviation, field trips to the airport and a holiday program that may involve Santa Claus being airlifted via helicopter to the school.

Airport Manager Ron Kochevar said one of the goals of the adoption is to expose children to the different kinds of aviation careers besides that of pilot.

"But the main goal is to help keep them interested in staying in school," Kochevar said.

He said officials hope that exciting books and tools about aviation will be an added incentive for students to continue their studies.

Personifying the airport's hopes for Gault Street Elementary School was "Captain Aero" who, decked out in goggles and a scarf, made a visit during the ceremony.

The super-hero told youngsters to "dare to dream" and gave out aviation-related toys such as milk caps with the Van Nuys Airport logo printed on them.

Students in one fifth-grade class attached notes with their names and the school's address to balloons, which they let go at the end of the adoption ceremony.

Ricky Walker, 10, said the students hope that someone will find the notes and write back to them.

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