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Water buffalo and sled beside the future helicopter landing zone.

The Work Must Go On

Waiting for the R44 Certification

The R44 you prayed for is on Mindanao Island in the Philippines!  But keep praying.  The paperwork process isn’t finished yet.   

Meanwhile, missionary pilots Brian Pruett and Josh Dalton know the work must go on.  They’re willing to haul provisions to the tribal teams.  But right now, no one is available to buy the supplies.  That’s where the pilots’ wives, Bailey Pruett and Candy Dalton, enter the picture.   

It’s not your normal grocery shopping.  First Bailey and Candy take orders from the teams — by e-mail or text – including unusual instructions like waterproofing, shock absorbing, and disguising to protect things vulnerable to theft. 

Armed with categorized lists, Bailey and Candy first buy the packing supplies and non-perishables.  With no Walmart, they go to different small stores for each type of item – including the plastic bag store!

To purchase fresh items, the ladies conscript three Filipino friends to help them at the market and specialty stores. 

Next comes packing.  The special instructions are crucial:  This load will go by 4-wheel-drive until the road ends.  Then the guys will pack it on a water buffalo sled to finish the journey.   “Try getting eggs and mangoes to survive that trip!” challenge the Pruetts. 

Brian gets his vehicle ready, including tools and gear to rescue themselves if they get stuck.  “A breakdown in the jungle is just a bad idea,” he says.  Load the truck.  Double-check the list.  Ready!

The next day at 4 a.m., Josh and Brian leave.  They hope the men with the water buffalo, hired by the missionaries, will be there to meet them at the appointed time.  If not …

Fifteen hours after leaving, the guys arrive back, well-jostled by the rough roads.  The same trip in the helicopter would have taken 1 hour total!  

The next morning, the pilots wake up to a message from the missionary team:  “[Our translation of the book of] Numbers is going a bit slow.  Chapters 18-19 had some real doozies to work through.  Thanks for praying!”

“What it’s all about!” say the Pruetts.  “We can use our gifts, abilities and availability to keep gifted teachers and translators doing what they do best.” 


Tags: Aviation, Helicopter, Philippines
POSTED ON Jun 07, 2016