Arizona Aviation Journal

Arizona Business Aviation Association Awards Fall Scholarships

Arizona Business Aviation Association (AZBAA) has awarded scholarships totaling $9500 to four applicants in business aviation-centered education programs or careers.

Fostering careers in aviation is important, as aviation represents 10% of the state of Arizona's total employment. There are 84 airports in Arizona serving our citizens, more than 45 million passengers relying on air transportation to reach Arizona, and 3 million aircraft takeoffs/landings per year from general aviation airports. Business aviation is any flying done for business purposes other than scheduled airlines and military aviation.

The AZBAA is very proud to congratulate its 2014 Fall scholarship winners:

Patricia Espinosa $3500, Cochise College Commercial Pilot and Unmanned Aviation Systems Patricia is a pilot and unmanned aerial vehicle operator. She is the vice president of the Papa Zero Three flight club at Cochise College, and she will be pursuing a bachelor's degree in Aeronautics at Embry-Riddle University with a minor in unmanned aircraft systems. Patricia aspires to start an aviation business to fight Arizona wildfires more efficiently by coordinating manned and unmanned aerial systems.


PHX Sky Train® Now Serves All Terminals at Phoenix Sky Harbor

T3 PHX Sky Train Station7-14_6979 (1)editPhoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, members of the Phoenix City Council, City and Airport officials took the first ride to the brand new Terminal 3 PHX Sky Train® Station December 8 at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. The event marked the opening of the newest section of the PHX Sky Train®, extending it to Terminal 3 with a walkway to Terminal 2. There is no Terminal 1 at Phoenix Sky Harbor. The train now connects the regional Valley Metro Rail with Sky Harbor’s East Economy Parking and all three airport terminals.

“All of Sky Harbor’s passengers may now enjoy an easy connection with public transportation, and a convenient ride between the Airport and downtown Phoenix. That is great news, especially with the Super Bowl coming to Phoenix in 2015,” said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton. “Our goal was to open this extension before Super Bowl and we have exceeded expectations, opening it in time for December and January holiday travel.” 


Embry-Riddle Pilot Receives Master CFI Recognition

MCFI Ken Fukayama, AZ (Nov14)editMaster Instructors LLC has announced that Ken Fukayama, a 2-time Master, recently renewed his Master CFI accreditation.  Ken is a ground instructor, flight check instructor, and upset recovery instructor with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) at Prescott's Love Field (PRC).  Additionally, he serves as head coach of the university's NIFA flight team, the Golden Eagles, and is the university's assistant aviation safety program manager. Recently, Fukayama's accreditation as a Master CFI (Certificated Flight Instructor) was renewed by Master Instructors LLC, the international accrediting authority for the Master Instructor designation as well as the FAA-approved "Master Instructor Programä."  He first earned this national professional accreditation in 2012, has held it continuously since then, and is one of only 145 worldwide to earn the credential two (2) times. To help put these achievements in their proper perspective, there are approximately 98,000 CFIs in the United States.  Fewer than 800 of those aviation educators have achieved that professional distinction thus far.  The last 19 National



monsoon 2011 077AeditFrontier Airlines today inaugurated service from Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX) to Houston (IAH), Salt Lake City (SLC) and San Francisco (SFO) solidifying its presence in the Valley of the Sun with non-stop service to seven popular destinations. The airline also reinforced its commitment to ‘Low Fares Done Right’ – offering low fares and doing it right every time by meeting our customer’s expectations for a safe and reliable experience – by announcing a one-day sale to all seven non-stop destinations with low fares starting at an incredible $39 one-way at

To help celebrate the launch of new flights the airline also announced an exciting ticket give-away valid for Arizona residents from Phoenix Sky Harbor to any non-stop destination served by Frontier Airlines. To enter and for complete terms and conditions, visit where today only one round-trip ticket will be given away every hour between noon and midnight Mountain Standard Time (MST).

“Frontier’s excited to now offer service to seven non-stop destinations from Phoenix Sky Harbor giving Arizona travelers a reprieve from the sting of high airfares,” said Frontier Airlines Senior Vice President, Commercial Daniel Shurz. “With the launch of these three new destinations, we expect to save customers 51% when compared to our competitors’ average fares in the markets – that’s an average round trip savings of $170 per person.”
"Frontier has been a great partner and we look forward to the airline’s continued success at Phoenix Sky Harbor," said Tamie Fisher, Phoenix Acting Aviation Director.

In addition to new routes launched today, Frontier also currently offers low fare, non-stop flights to Cincinnati (CVG), Chicago (ORD), Cleveland (CLE) and Denver (DEN) bringing the total number of non-stop destinations offered from Phoenix to seven.


Santa Making Annual CAF Stop at Falcon Field

AFTN Santa nr planeThis is a special Santa Alert! Air Traffic Control at Falcon Field Municipal Airport in Mesa reports seeing a blip near the North Pole on its radar screen. It looks like Santa Claus has begun his annual 3,905-mile journey to The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Airbase Arizona Aviation Museum at Falcon Field. According to Ground Support at the Museum, Santa is scheduled to land at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 29, 2014. Earlier that morning, before doors open to the public, the Museum will host a special "Breakfast With Santa" for 100 children sponsored by the Salvation Army.

Santa and CAF Airbase Arizona are also going to help the East Valley Firefighters Charities collect toys for needy children this Holiday Season during their annual toy drive. The Museum will collect new unwrapped toys and canned food from November 29 through December 19. On the day of Santa's November 29 visit special admission prices will be in effect. Admission will be free for children 12 and under and $12.00 for those 13 and over. Museum visitors who bring a new, unwrapped toy to the Airbase that day will receive FREE admission. Those bringing canned food will receive $1.00 off of the Museum admission price.

The East Valley Firefighters will distribute these toys and canned goods to needy children throughout the area for the holidays. Santa also will be talking to all the girls and boys who come to the Museum that day, gathering their Christmas wishes and his special Elf assistants will assist him in determining who has been naughty and nice. Doors open at 10:00 a.m. and close at 4:00
p.m. with Santa Claus arriving at 11:00 a.m. Admission includes a tour through the Aviation Museum and its collection of over 20 historic aircraft. Toy drawings will be conducted every hour.

The CAF Airbase Arizona Aviation Museum and the City of Mesa encourage everyone to join the East Valley Firefighters in making sure needy children have a happy Holiday Season.

The Toy and Food Drive will run from November 29, 2014 to December 19 this Holiday Season at the CAF Airbase Arizona Aviation Museum.


City of Phoenix Aviation Director Retires

Murphy, DannyAfter 31 years with the City of Phoenix, Danny Murphy, Director of Aviation has announced his retirement. Mr. Murphy joined the City in 1983 and has served in a diverse array of executive leadership roles. This included Chief Information Officer, Water Services Director and Acting Deputy and Assistant City Manager positions. He has led the Aviation Department and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport with distinction for over 8 years.

"I want to thank and commend Danny for an outstanding career as a city leader. It has been a great honor to work with someone as committed to public service as he is," said Phoenix City Manager Ed Zuercher.

Murphy has led the Aviation Department through the construction of the PHX Sky Train, an internationally acclaimed, award-winning restaurant overhaul in Terminal 4, tough recession decisions, a federal government shutdown, two Phoenix-critical airline mergers and countless security and infrastructure improvement projects. He did all of this while maintaining excellent bond ratings with both Standard and Poor's and Moody's.

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton said, "The City of Phoenix has undoubtedly been a better place during the 31 years that Danny Murphy served it in so many capacities. We will all miss him greatly and count on him to remain an active member of this community."

Murphy says he looks forward to relaxing and spending time with his family and friends.

"I am proud to have served this community throughout my career and I have the utmost confidence in Assistant Aviation Directors Tamie Fisher, Chad Makovsky and the staff of the Aviation Department to carry America's Friendliest Airport's vision forward," Murphy said.
"I’ve never met such dedicated, hard-working people," he added.

His last day with the city will be October 30. Tamie Fisher will take over as Acting Phoenix Aviation Director, the first female ever to lead the department since the City took ownership of Sky Harbor in 1935.



RAF Pipers MarchThe Commemorative Air Force's ("CAF") Airbase Arizona Aviation Museum, located at Falcon Field in Mesa, Arizona, announced plans today for the annual RAF Cadet Memorial Service at the City of Mesa Cemetery located at 1212 N. Center Street, Mesa, Arizona on Sunday morning, November 9, 2014 at 10:45 AM.

The Memorial Service honors the 23 RAF Cadets who lost their lives in flight training at #4 British Flying Training School (which ultimately became Mesa's Falcon Field) during World War II. Once cadet training was completed, graduates returned to Great Britain for reassignment in the skies over Europe, North Africa and the Pacific, wherever British forces fought alongside their American allies in the world-wide struggle against Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and the Japanese Empire. The 23 deceased cadets who died in training were and remain today an
inspiration to those alongside whom they trained and those today who remember the principles for which they gave their lives.

The Memorial service has been conducted for more than 30 years and includes a wreath laying ceremony, remembrances and tributes to these fallen servicemen. The British Plot is located approximately in the center of the Mesa Cemetery. Representatives of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Royal Air Force and numerous dignitaries from both the City of Mesa and the British government will be present. The Mesa Caledonian Pipe Band will perform. This is a public event and all are invited to attend. There is no admission charge for this event.

Now in its 36th year of operation as the premiere aviation attraction in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area, the Aviation Museum is operated by Airbase Arizona (formerly the CAF Arizona Wing, now honored to be the first designated Airbase of the CAF). Organized in 1978 as the local Arizona chapter of the Commemorative Air Force, the mission of Airbase Arizona is to restore and preserve historically important aircraft and related memorabilia in order to educate the public about the significant contributions made by men and women in the defense of the
Nation. Airbase Arizona is home base to a unique collection of twenty historic warbirds, including the famed, fully restored Sentimental Journey, one of the few remaining World War II-era B-17 Flying Fortress bombers still flying today, and Maid in the Shade, a veteran B-25 Mitchell bomber that saw action in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations in World War II.



Gathering of Legends_1The Commemorative Air Force's ("CAF") Airbase Arizona Aviation Museum, located at Falcon Field in Mesa, Arizona, announced plans today for its Seventh Annual Gathering of Legends, an event celebrating the service of military aviators and flight crews instrumental in preserving the Nation's heritage of freedom.

This year, aviation veterans of WWII, Korea and Vietnam representing noted groups such as the Tuskegee Airmen, Women's Airforce Service Pilots ("WASPS"), World War II fighter aces, former RAF Cadets who trained at Falcon Field in World War II, bomber crews, Forward Air Controllers and others will be on hand to share their experiences with attendees.

The Airbase is privileged to include among the Legends in attendance honorees inducted into the Airbase's Military Aviation Walk of Honor, a prominent feature of the Museum, including two Medal of Honor recipients: Colonel Bruce P. Crandall (U. S. Army, ret.) and Major Fred Ferguson (U.S. Army, ret.); as well as Mr. Sergei Sikorsky and retired U. S. Navy Rear Admirals Lew Chatham and Hugh Dennis Wisely. More on these Legends' background can be found at

This unique Veteran's Day weekend commemoration starts off on Monday evening, November 10, 2014, when Airbase Arizona hosts its Dinner With The Legends, to be held at the Airbase's unique Aviation Museum at Falcon Field (located at 2017 N. Greenfield Road Mesa). Colonel Bruce Crandall will deliver the keynote address at the Dinner.


New Prescott Business Represented Best in Arizona Aviation and Technology At World’s Biggest Air Show

X-Copter Sunset_med (1)editX-Copter, Prescott's newest aviation business and helicopter aviation's newest simulation company, exhibited and demonstrated its next generation helicopter flight simulator at the world's largest airshow in Oshkosh, Wi., during AirVenture 2014.  The airshow attracted record crowds of over 500,000 spectators and 10,000 aircraft between July 28 - August 3rd.

After thousands of flight testing hours, X-Copter pre-viewed its generation-one helicopter training device during HELI-EXPO 2014, the helicopter industry's largest trade show. There, X-Copter is sharing features and capabilities of their simulator while anticipating approval from the Federal Aviation Administration.

The X-Copter is a primary flight training device for helicopter student pilots, private owners, and organizations who use helicopters in their daily operations.  The simulators boast three massive 60" inch high definition screens outside the cockpit (outside view), two high definition touch screens in the cockpit, and highly customized cockpit controls.

"In addition to recent FAA approval, we are very excited about our new leasing and financing options for our customers. We will make it very easy for a flight school or individual to acquire an X-Copter," stated Brandon Frett, Dir. of Simulation.

Based at the Prescott Municipal Airport (KPRC), the company has already produced and delivered fourteen (14) production units with an additional 10 units on order and in production. "We are excited about our recent success and our presence at AirVenture 2014. There are both domestic and international opportunities and we look forward to what the future holds.  Most importantly, we look forward to growing our business and bringing hi-tech jobs to the region," remarks Frett.

X-Copter currently offers helicopter flight simulation models for the Robinson R22 and R44 helicopters. In development are the popular Robinson R66, Bell, and Schweizer models.


Phoenix TRACON Says Weather Advisories Restored

Due to some quick action by a number of folks literally across the country, the Phoenix TRACON reports they now have their weather feed returned to service for Northern Arizona. Curt Faulk, Staff Manager said, “We really did believe that this was going to be a long-term situation as of yesterday afternoon. It's nice to know that we can all react quickly when we need to.”