Holiday gatherings with friends and family, great food, gifts, and traditions are things many of us look forward to this time of year. For others who may be less fortunate, this can be a difficult time, and I’m proud to work with so many employees that help to make the holiday season a little brighter for those in need. Giving back to the communities where our customers and employees live and work is an important part of who we are at United, and this month, we kick off an annual and beloved United tradition called Fantasy Flights. We’ll host Fantasy Flights at 11 airports across our system this December, and it’s truly a magical day for children and their families. To tell you more about these events, I’ve asked three United employees and long-time Fantasy Flight volunteer leaders at our Chicago O’Hare (ORD) hub—Jeff Brick, Peg Bucaro, and Finola Wagner—to share a few thoughts. I, along with our entire United family, would like to wish you and your family a very happy and healthy holiday season and safe travels throughout the year.
Acting CEO, United Airlines
Bringing the Fantasy to Life
We’re excited to be celebrating the 30th anniversary of the ORD Fantasy Flight event and our 12th year together as a team
“At several of our airports each year, United flies deserving children—many of whom are battling life-threatening, chronic, and terminal illnesses—and their families on a one-of-a-kind trip to the ‘North Pole.’ After a quick flight, the plane returns to a different gate, where our special passengers experience a magical wonderland full of gifts, food, and entertainment, thanks to our ‘Santa’s Village’ of employee and retiree volunteers. At our ORD hub and other participating airports, volunteers work year-round to raise money for gifts and fuel, bake cookies and prepare food, decorate gate rooms and hangars, and don holiday costumes—all to host these Fantasy Flight events for children in need.” — Jeff Brick, Ramp Service Lead
“For many of these children, it is the first time they have been in an airport, let alone an airplane. We can all identify someone who is going through a difficult time—someone with a child battling an illness or struggling financially—and being able to volunteer and touch people’s lives in a positive way, even for one day, is an honor.” — Peg Bucaro, Global Services Customer Service Representative
“Our customers often see what we are doing and ask how they can help. The positivity and excitement is contagious, and we are proud to be part of a company that supports such a heartwarming and important event. We’re looking forward to our next 12 years together planning, participating, and watching all involved enjoy an unforgettable day.” — Finola Wagner, Customer Service Representative