Leo Sicard’s one bucket list item was finally crossed off thanks to the help of Angel Flight East (AFE) pilots Bob Chieffo and Sanjay Kansara. AFE is a volunteer pilot organization dedicated to serving the community by facilitating free air transportation for children and adults who need medical treatment far from home and for other humanitarian needs.
Sicard is a World War II and Korean War Veteran who served on the USS Iowa, while also being an escort for President Franklin D. Roosevelt. When Sicard’s last living brother died suddenly in Northampton, MA he contacted AFE in hopes the organization would help him travel to attend the funeral as he was unable to afford the cost of a commercial ticket. AFE was there to help.
Upon his flight to Massachusetts, Sicard mentioned to his pilot Bob Chieffo that he had always wanted to visit the Roosevelt House and put his name in the guest book, but had never gotten the chance. Chieffo was so inspired by Sicard’s personality and service to our country that he immediately called AFE and said “We’ve got to make this happen for this guy.”
After attending his brother’s funeral and visiting family in Massachusetts, Sicard prepared for the flight home and a special surprise along the way. AFE pilot Chieffo made a stop in Hyde Park, NY where Sicard finally got the chance to visit the home of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He had the chance to share his story with museum administrators and visitors. While visiting the Tehran Conference exhibit, he was especially over joyed as that is where he first met Roosevelt and escorted him aboard the USS Iowa over 60 years ago! Sicard was even able to deliver a master copy of a USS Iowa documentary for the museum’s archives
After finally checking off one of his most important bucket list items, Sicard met up with AFE volunteer pilot Sanjay Kansara, who completed the mission and took him back home to Ellwood City, PA.