Mission Accomplished, the Mission ContinuesCandy Bomber Foundation Celebration

During the Cold War Berlin Blockade of 1948, a small act of kindness gave rise to an international phenomenon when a young US Air Force pilot, Gail S. Halvorsen, gave two sticks of gum to the war weary children waiting outside the fence of Tempelhof Airport. Those children inspired him to drop candy bars via handkerchief parachutes from his plane to the anxious children he knew were waiting amidst the rubble of a city over 75% destroyed during World War II. With this unprecedented act of kindness, Gail was going counter to orders and risked court martial. His actions were born in the philosophy of compassion and service before self that were a guiding principle of Gail’s life. 

From that seed, it grew to become a movement that brought together people on both sides of the Atlantic to help the children of Berlin. The candy bar filled parachutes floating down from the skies brought hope to the oppressed people of Berlin. Ultimately, over 80 thousand donated candy bars carried hope into the besieged city, making friends of former enemies. This small act of kindness changed the trajectory of the Cold War, and eventually led to the fall of the Iron Curtain forty years later. 

Seventy-five years after the end of the Berlin Airlift the legacy of Gail S Halvorsen continues through the Candy Bomber Foundation. Their mission is to share The Candy Bomber philosophy of kindness, hope and service. Their goal is to create a world where small acts of kindness can make a big difference. Utilizing aviation education, STEM education, and community education, they promote the values of “attitude, gratitude and service before self” as shared by Gail S Halvorsen to help create the next generation of Candy Bombers.

The Candy Bomber Foundation will be breaking ground on the Halvorsen Heritage Center to be located at the north end of the Spanish Fork Airport on Saturday, May 18th at 2:00 pm. The public is invited to join in this exciting moment in their mission. 

In this new 14,000 sq. ft. building students and the community will have the opportunity to learn about the rich history of the Candy Bomber, the hope he and many other pilots brought to the people of Berlin during the Berlin Airlift, and how their kindness created bonds of friendship that still run strong today throughout the world. 

The Center will also be a hub for aviation, STEM and humanities learning, with programs that will start students feet on the path to success in any chosen career and help them start good habits of service to others.

“The Candy Bomber Foundation is working to bring hope and opportunities to children, so that they can take that hope and share it with the world, just as Gail Halvorsen did.” ~ Lorene Moore, Asst. Executive Director of The Candy Bomber Foundation.

In celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the end of the Berlin Airlift,  the foundation will be holding a Mission Accomplished – the Mission Continues Fundraising Gala the evening of May 18th  at 6:00 pm in the new Hangar 107 facility at the Spanish Fork Airport. The gala will include Whitney Lusk, Kainoa Clark, Magician Jason Fun and General Mike Minihan, Commander, Air Mobility Command. For tickets and sponsorship information go to links.servedaily.com/CandyBomberGala.

Submitted by Lorene Moore

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