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Fall 2011_Winter 2010_Holiday 8/12/11 12:48 AM Page 22


Article by: Allen Edwards Photography by: Jodi Beth Stuckey Te


airspace over


South Georgia has been a little


friendlier


for pilots and their crews since Alan Mathis started Eagles of America in 2004. Based at the Moultrie Municipal Airport and designated by the Federal Aviation


Administration as a fixed-base operator (FBO), Mathis’ company provides airplanes with fuel


and repairs and their pilots a break from the


pressures of


air travel. In short, Eagles of America


is like an aeronautical service station or a truck stop to the skies.


Mathis, a Moultrie native, says the label FBO promises aviators a “mini- mum level of service” – fuel, food, and airplane maintenance. For most small- town FBOs, the emphasis is on “mini- mal.” Mathis has flown into airports that offer little beyond a stretch of run- way, scanty hangar space, and one em- ployee behind the desk. “And he may be out back taking out the trash when you land,” says Mathis with a laugh. A high quality FBO at a small town air- port, then, is a rare thing. So when Mathis started Eagles of America in 2004 he wanted to provide


22 Fall 2011


a true full-service FBO to aviators in the South Georgia area, something far beyond a government-defined mini- mal level. “From the first time pilots call in on the radio when they are coming in to the last call they make when they are leaving the runway, we hold their hand through the entire ex- perience,” says Mathis. “Tat personal touch helps us stand out in the indus- try from other smaller airports.” Te Eagles of America experience


starts before the plane ever touches down. “Tey call in and we answer their call,” says Mathis. “You don’t usu-


ally get that at a small airport.” When the pilot lands, he is greeted with a friendly “Welcome to Moultrie” on the radio and by a baggage car on the run- way. From morning to dusk, Mathis makes sure someone meets incoming aviators at the desk with refreshments and a smile. Pilots have a lounge area where they may shower and rest on the premises or they may borrow a car free of charge to head into Moultrie for shopping and a meal. Workers top off the plane’s fuel tank and mechanics are available for any servicing the plane needs. Most importantly, a member of


Moultrie Magazine


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