Citation Airlift Carries Special Athletes

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About 2,500 Special Olympics athletes will arrive in style at the U.S. Special Olympics National Games at Iowa State University next July. A fleet of 400 privately owned Cessna Citations will fly the athletes from 35 states to the Games. All of the flight time, pilot time and fuel will be donated by the owners of the planes. Cessna is coordinating the effort, called the Citation Special Olympics Airlift. A sign-up sheet is available by going to the link provided on the airlift information page. This is the fifth such effort for Citation owners. It started in 1987 with 132 Citations and the most recent airlift in 1999 involved 260 aircraft. Each plane will carry four to seven athletes, plus coaches and trainers in flights ranging from 90 minutes to three hours. At the end of the Games, the planes will again converge on Des Moines International Airport for the return trip.