This week’s Story of Hope comes from HR Admin Supervisor Terri Shaffer whose connection to breast cancer spans a range of people from close family to friends, but there is one common theme. Read her story:
Way too many women are affected by breast cancer. For me, I know three women who were diagnosed after going through regular mammograms:
My grandma, who I love dearly, was diagnosed in 2006 at 75 years old. She had a mastectomy, but did not have reconstructive surgery. She is now 87 and is cancer-free. She went through everything like a champ. Nothing rattled her. She is such a giver. She always takes time to be with her grandchildren, of which there are 12. She always made each of us feel very special. Even at my age, she still gives me stickers. It’s precious to be with her.
I just found out last week about a dear friend of mine who was diagnosed. She had a lumpectomy and is undergoing radiation treatments now. She’s on 15 of 25. Throughout her telling me and her treatments, she hasn’t changed her outlook. To her, going to treatment is like going to the store. She is my Sister in Christ. That is why this is just a bump in the road to her. She has hope because she believes He is going to take care of her even if it means she will go home to be with Him. It isn’t stopping her from living and giving.
A former co-worker of mine at the company I worked at before PSA was diagnosed while I was working there. She also underwent a mastectomy. It was like I went through it with her, as I was in HR and helped her with insurance and such. I’m happy to say she is now cancer-free.
All these women share two common traits: Being very strong and positive
DAYTON, Ohio – PSA Airlines, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Airlines, today announced its plans to open a full-service maintenance base at Norfolk International Airport (ORF). PSA’s immense fleet expansion necessitates additional locations to support the maintenance and reliability of its growing fleet. Since 2014, PSA has doubled its size from 49 aircraft to 121 aircraft and will continue to grow to operate 150 Bombardier CRJ aircraft. In addition to this new facility in ORF, PSA has maintenance bases at Akron-Canton Airport (CAK), Charlotte-Douglas International Airport (CLT) Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), Greenville-Spartanburg (GSP) and Dayton International Airport (DAY).
“We are excited about the bright future of this maintenance facility and the positive impact it will have on the reliability of our operation for years to come,” said Gary Pratt, Vice President – Maintenance & Engineering, PSA Airlines. “ORF is a well-supported market for our parent company, American Airlines, and makes for a strategic addition to PSA Airlines’ portfolio of maintenance bases.”
With an existing 49,000-square-foot facility available at ORF, PSA will be able to accelerate the establishment of a fully-operational overnight maintenance base. The airline will be hiring a full staff of maintenance professionals including leadership, technicians, quality control and stores personal. PSA plans to employ approximately 80 employees at the new facility. The appeal of the Norfolk area is instrumental in helping PSA attract a skilled and talented workforce.
PSA expects to open the maintenance base operation in January 2018. For more information about the positions PSA will be filling at its ORF facility, please visit www.psaairlines.com/careers
About PSA Airlines
PSA Airlines operates an all-jet fleet consisting of exclusively Bombardier regional jet aircraft. The company’s 3,000 employees operate nearly 700 daily flights to nearly 90 destinations. Headquartered in Dayton, Ohio, PSA also has flight crew bases located in Dayton, Cincinnati, Ohio, Knoxville, Tennessee, Washington, D.C., and Charlotte, North Carolina. PSA has maintenance facilities in Dayton and Canton, Ohio and Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Greenville, South Carolina. PSA operates 35 Bombardier CRJ200 aircraft, 31 Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft and 54 Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft. The airline expects to add additional aircraft bringing its fleet count to 150.
Title: CASS (Continuing Analysis & Surveillance System) Analyst
How long have you worked for PSA? Two and 1/2 years
How long have you been in the airline industry? Where did you work before PSA? This is my first job with an airline, but have been in the aviation industry for (34) years. Prior to PSA, I managed a PART 145 Turbine Engine Repair and Overhaul facility for Dallas Airmotive that was located on the General Aviation side of Dayton International Airport.
What brought you to PSA? Career change due to company downsizing.
Give us a brief overview of what you do: The CASS Department monitors regulatory compliance for PSA. Any non-compliance events are handled through Root Cause Analysis (RCA) process and we work with various departments to put solid actions in place to prevent future occurrences.
What is one of the biggest challenges of your job? The biggest challenge is changing the culture of PSA to prioritize Safety and Compliance. We work very hard every day, and believe we are all making a difference.
If you were to give advice to PSA team members on how to prioritize safety and compliance, what would it be? Do the right thing, even if no one is watching.
Where’s your favorite place you have traveled? Alaska. We witnessed whales bubble feeding up close, which is a once in a lifetime experience, and were in awe of the natural beauty of the region. Our daughter was married in Ketchikan during that trip which made it even more memorable.
What are some of your hobbies? Family vacations, bicycling, motorcycling, disc golf, hiking and now kayaking. I don’t play hockey anymore, too old, but do ice skate as much as possible.
What do you love about working for PSA? The variety – no two days are the same. And, I work with some really great people. Our rapid growth has presented some challenges, but that makes it fun. It’s nice to know I’m helping to build the top regional airline in the country.
Would you recommend PSA and why? Yes, I would. It is a great place to start a new career. There are many paths to take with this ever- growing organization.
Tell us something about your role that most people don’t know: I have a very colorful nickname (not fit for print) in our department and I wear it proudly! It was given to me by the Tech Services team and shows that our department’s visibility within the company is noticed and is directly tied to changing the culture, in a good way.
What has been the most rewarding part of your job? Satisfaction at the end of the day that I have made a difference. I have also made many new friends and have interesting co-workers. We work hard but have fun too. Halloween is just around the corner!
Tell us something no one knows about you: I can’t swim, so I am taking swim lessons. Don’t want to drown while kayaking!
I survived breast cancer 5 years ago after receiving a double mastectomy. Five years to the very week, it returned. PSA Inflight managers really stepped up with support like none other before. The AFA union reps rendered equal care and concern. However, I have learned all over again that my happiness comes from what image I give others of myself. If I show defeat or depression, I will receive pity, but if I show just a little bit of strength, that’s exactly what I’ll receive back from my supporters. Regardless of my daily fight right now, I have to have hope in myself in order for others to not only have hope for me, but for them to know that they too can make it through whatever seems to be a rough patch for themselves at any time. We are responsible for our own happiness in life. Each day I live, I can fight this. Each day I fight, it allows me Life! I had my surgery last week and will soon have chemo followed up with radiation. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to wear my pink scarf to work as I am home recovering from the surgery. But seeing pictures of my fellow flight attendants makes me so happy beyond imaginable. You see, some of them may wear it just for a change in the uniform, but 1 in 10 people will know or come in contact with someone In the Fight, a Survivor of the Fight or know someone who lost the Fight to Cancer. So whether they know it or not, seeing that Pink Scarf or Pink Tie around their neck is such a heartfelt, tearful moment for someone like me. And I thank everyone who wears pink because You help me grow strong!
Jean Holloway’s life changed forever when she was diagnosed with Stage IV (Metastatic) breast cancer. As part of a small statistic of the overall number of breast cancer fighters, she has learned that this group is relatively ignored in the big picture of cancer research funding efforts. She is determined to change that.
Cancer does not discriminate.
I was 37 years old and in the prime of my life when I was diagnosed in December 2016 with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer. Since then, I have survived four months of chemotherapy and I am currently on hormone suppressants and taking a daily chemotherapy pill to target the tumors that have spread to my liver. I share this because this disease has been portrayed as something you fight and beat and then you are a part of this fun community of women that wear pink. That is simply not the case.
Each year, 200,000 Americans are diagnosed with breast cancer. 6-10% percent of these diagnoses are metastatic, or Stage IV, and approximately another 30% of breast cancer patients will develop metastatic breast cancer. 100% of those diagnosed with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer will die from it. However, only 2% of breast cancer donations go to Metastatic research. Most money raised goes toward early detection and awareness. Although those two things are important, they do not save lives. The only way to survive is to raise money for research that will discover a cure for Stage IV. 113 women and men die from Metastatic Breast Cancer daily. I do not want to be a part of that statistic.
I wear a pink and purple ribbon to represent living #beyondpink and in honor of those we are losing daily to this terrible disease. My hope in wearing this ribbon is that it will spark the conversation and educate others on the importance of Metastatic Breast Cancer research.
Thank you to my PSA family and team for the hope you have given me to continue my #nonstopfight.