FIRST officer Vincent Kipma could not fight back tears yesterday, a testament of where determination, commitment and hard work can get you.
“It’s an honour, so much more than an honour actually, a little boy’s dream,” an emotional First Officer Kipma said yesterday after flying in the Falcon 900 EX and landing at Jackson International Airport.
“And dreams do come true. I grew up with Air Niugini. Mum worked for the company. She still does and for me to be here with her beside me is more than I could ever ask for,” he said.
First Officer Kipma, who is a first officer on the Boeing and a captain on Air Niugini’s Fokker 100 fleet, said flying the Falcon was “a dream come true” and he had his mum and Air Niugini to thank for it.
“I’ve flown everything in Air Niugini’s fleet.
“This is like the icing on the cake. I’ve flown the Dash 8s, F28s F100s, Boeing 767, 757 and now the Falcon.
“It’s truly an honour flying for Air Niugini. They have made my dreams come true.”
Standing alongside him to bask in the glory yesterday was mum Rose Sokol, a middle-aged figure in a rose-dotted meri-blouse.
In all the excitement of the arrival of the Falcon 900 EX, Ms Sokol silently slipped through to embrace a son she was more than proud of.
“I am very proud,” were all the words she could muster. But the way her face lit up when she stood next to him for a photo shoot said everything.
Captained by First Officer Kipma, the executive jet touched down just before 11am after the eight-hour 20-minute flight at 41,000 feet across the Pacific Ocean – from Honolulu, Hawaii.
The aircraft was given a traditional hose-down on arrival.