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Whitby Dene resident takes to the skies for her 96th birthday

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A resident at Whitby Dene got in the pilot seat as part of a surprise trip to celebrate her birthday.

Mamie Evans, a resident at Whitby Dene on Whitby Road, celebrated her 96th birthday on 6 September, and was surprised by the team with the opportunity to take up her great passion, flying, once again.

Mamie often talks fondly of her time spent flying to other residents and team members at the home, and she hadn’t been in a plane in over forty years.

As a result, the team members at Whitby Dene decided to arrange something special with the help of charity Aerobility to surprise Mamie with the chance to get take to the skies once more.

Leaving from Blackbushe Airport, Mamie and her co-pilot Nick Glover set off on their flight where they took in scenes of the world beneath them including Reading, Basingstoke, and Reading football stadium. During the flight, Mamie was even able to take control the plane and fly it herself.

Whitby Dene home manager, Saad Baig, said: “Everyone at Whitby Dene knows how special flying is to Mamie, and after she submitted her wish to our ‘wishing tree’, we were thrilled to be able to make her request happen for her 96th birthday. Mamie had a brilliant time and it brought back many memories of flying from her younger years.”

Mamie added: “It was a wonderful day and I was delighted to be able to get back into an aircraft. I didn’t think I’d get the chance to fly a plane ever again so it was a fantastic surprise. It was a really memorable day – I can’t thank Aerobility and the team at Whitby Dene enough for giving me the opportunity to take up my hobby once again.”

Mike Miller-Smith MBE, chief executive officer at Aerobility, commented: “At Aerobility, we aim to make flying accessible for everyone, so we were delighted to be able to reunite Mamie with a lifelong passion of hers. Mamie was a fantastic co-pilot and at 96 years old, she’s now the oldest person that we’ve ever had join us for a flight.”

Open to new residents

316 Whitby Road, Eastcote, Greater London, HA4 9EE

Whitby Dene

CQC Rating: Good
  • Residential care
  • Dementia care
  • Respite care
  • Nursing care
  • Nursing dementia care
  • End of life care
  • Day club

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