Calgary students try to ‘fill the Boeing’ for Veterans Food Bank

Calgary aviation students hope veterans food drive really ‘takes off’
WATCH ABOVE: Remembrance Day may be over, but the effort to help our veterans continues. Here’s Gil Tucker with some young Calgarians hoping to collect enough food to “Fill the Boeing”.

Remembrance Day may be over, but the effort to help Canada’s military veterans continues in Calgary – and some aviation students hope their campaign will really “take off.”

They’re now busy weighing donations of food like cereal, instant noodles and canned soup, before delivering them to the Veterans Food Bank.

The scale is set up alongside a Boeing 737 at SAIT’s Aero Centre at the Calgary International Airport  in a food drive the students call “Fill the Boeing.”

“We’re planning on filling the Boeing to its maximum takeoff capacity,” student Liana Buessecker explained, “which is about 55,000 pounds of food.”

“It’s mind-blowing,” student Matthew Holland said. “It’s a lot of food.”

Student Mattew Granley got some perspective on the size of the challenge when he first brought it up with his family.

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“My dad flies (Boeing 737s) for Westjet,” Granley said. “He was, like, ‘what? That’s crazy. I doubt you’d be able to do that.’”

But Granley feels it’s a challenge well worth taking on.

“I do have a lot of friends, I do have a lot of family who have served in the military, so it hits home for me.”

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The students are collecting donations of food and money until Dec. 7, with collection points at the Aero Centre and on SAIT’s main campus.

Volunteers can also pick up large donations – anyone who wants to contribute that way can call 403-284-7018 to make arrangements.

“If there’s a will, there’s a way,” Holland said.

And as for Granley’s doubting dad, the 737 pilot:

“I told him, ‘you know what?” Granley said.

“We’ll show you. We’ll do it.”

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