If you’re booked on am American flight in October you will notice that the airline and its crews are flying in the ‘pink’ with workers wearing ties, socks, scarves and other pink accessories. The carrier has made a commitment to promote Breast Cancer Awareness Month in a big way with its more than 100,000 personnel participating in Be Pink, an employee-led breast cancer awareness initiative that takes place each October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month that helps to raise money to finance breast cancer research through Susan G. Komen. Throughout October, which begins tomorrow lest you forgot, passengers of American can help by making a minimum donation of $25 for which the airline will put 20 AAdvantage miles into their accounts. Donations can be made at www.aa.com/bepink.
Also part of the pink plan is onboard items for sale such as pink lemonade. This month also marks the 21st time American has presented the American Airlines Celebrity Golf and Tennis Weekend which has raised more than $11.5 million for Komen since its inception in 1995.
To its credit especially in an era when airlines are making bundles of money with addeded fees, American is giving back and has for more than 30 years and is the Official Airline of Susan G. Komen. In 2014 the airline raised more than $1 million to support the cause through the generosity of employees, customers and corporate contributions. Customers can visit aa.com/bepink to learn more about joining the company’s efforts to create a world without breast cancer.
A heart-warming backstory
The pink campaign is especially poignant for American Airlines this year as one of its veteran reservations agents, Suzanne George whose daughter Sarah suffered through a bout of one of the most aggressive and least-researched forms of the disease – inflammatory breast cancer (IBC). It had already spread to her liver and bones by the time it had been discovered. George and her daughter sought help at the world’s only research center that specializes in IBC – the Morgan Welch Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Program and Clinic at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, which was founded in part with grant money from American through Susan G. Komen. “The very clinic that had oversight of our daughter’s treatment was supported by this Komen grant, so American’s charitable support of Komen had a direct bearing on Sarah’s care,” George said.
A happy ending
In August, less than one year after starting chemotherapy treatment at the clinic, Sarah had an x-ray that showed her tumors no longer showed a significant cancer presence. While her mother knows Sarah’s fight is not over, she is encouraged by this small victory. “During all the past years participating in Be Pink, I never could have imagined that my daughter’s very survival could rest on cutting-edge breast cancer research supported by my American family,” George said. “I am humbly and sincerely grateful for American and Komen’s support for the IBC clinic.”
Want to join the pink crusade, watch the video for some products to support the cause.