We received the following flight request:
â€œMy name is Rey and my wife Ellen and I have 2 children, Darrell, age 11 and Aaron, age 7. 2 years ago our lives were very different.
We both had good jobs and we were finally able to buy our first house, something we had dreamed about for so long. Things changed soon after this February of 2016 when Ellen was diagnosed with cancer. She had surgery and the cancer thankfully is stable. She goes back for follow-up every 6 months. Shortly after Ellen was diagnosed with cancer, her father who was diagnosed with an aneurysm. It has been so hard for her to not be able to go back and see him and of course he cannot travel due to his poor health. Then in June 2016, the back pain I had been experiencing turned out to be lung cancer which had already spread to my back. They had my prognosis as very poor. I was given less than 6 months. I had radiation and chemotherapy but unfortunately these treatments were only able to slow the spread of the cancer and terrible side effects I had with it resulted in my Oncologist recommending I stop treatment. I have just finished my second round of radiation and without side effects of the chemotherapy I am feeling the best I have in some time although the doctors have told me the cancer will continue to spread. I realize that time is very precious and came to understand that what was really important to both myself and Ellen was to be able to return to the Philippines with our 2 boys to see my mother, brother, sister and Ellenâ€™s brothers and parents especially her father with his poor health. However with both of us now on disability our income barely covers the cost of our mortgage and housing expenses. To pay for 4 tickets is overwhelming. We are so thankful for your consideration to help with some of the costs for the tickets and help us to fulfill this wish to spend this very bittersweet Christmas with family in the Philippinesâ€
4 flights to the Philippines is a big ask, but it is such a touching story and this family has been through so much. We were able to find some discounted flights on cash. We decided to use some of the money Flight Centre donated to make these flights happen. Your support has been amazing and when we called the family and let them know they were in shockâ€¦. They kept saying is this real. Everyone over on your team should feel absolutely amazing, they have given many Christmas flights, including this very special one.