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Aviation workers profiled, include (top left) Bernie Schettino, Tom Innace, Sue Baer. Front row, Terri Rizzuto, Toni Knisley and Debbie Roland, with author, Tom Murphy.

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Classic "Proudly I Fly" stories:

"My Uniform"
Aviation "Thank You"
Why Does Mary Fly?
Turning Loss into Action
Flying the Flag
Joy in Giving

Essay Judge:
Debbie M. Roland

Debbie M. Roland started as an American Airlines Flight Attendant in July 1976. Throughout her forty-two years, Debbie volunteered with the WINGS Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit organization assisting American Airline flight attendants nationwide in financial need due to illness, injury, disability or when a primary home becomes unlivable. See

She was a safety and security representative with the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) 1992-2008. She worked with various government organizations and unions in developing safety and security guidelines and benchmarks for flight attendants. She was also on the APFA Go-Team, investigating American Airline incidents and accidents.

Debbie is currently employed by Kettle Run High School Cafeteria as a School Nutrition Worker (Lunch Lady see photo!)

Now retired, Debbie lives in Fauquier County, Virginia with her husband and a zoo of fur family (dogs)

She loves to garden fresh vegetables, herbs and flowers and do canning.

Favorite thing about canning? She loves to give them away to friends and neighbors. Debbie makes personalized baskets for the holidays that contain jams, pickles, applesauce, beets, tomato sauce and freshly dehydrated herbs.

Debbie is currently pursuing the development of a small business which will feature handmade lotion, homemade healthy dog biscuits (Brady's Beggin' Biscuits) and dehydrated herbs (Canning Thyme).