Wings of Hope is a nonprofit organization that works to aid communities worldwide with the use of donated aircraft. They work to improve communities in areas such as health, education and general economy.

An occasional joyride or a meaningful donation: this was the decision Grant and Carol Barnum faced with their Cessna 210. Grant had purchased the plane for the joy of flying years ago, but in recent times found that it was sitting in the hangar more often than in the air. Together with his wife, the couple decided it was time to use the aircraft for a more worthy cause.

Grant says the couple had done research into aircraft donations and came to decide on Wings of Hope as their choice. Wings of Hope is a nonprofit organization that works to aid communities worldwide with the use of donated aircraft. They work to improve communities in areas such as health, education and general economy. 

After taking the time to fill out the required paperwork for the transfer, the Barnums were officially in the process of donating their Cessna. On Saturday, Jan. 5, Wings of Hope volunteer pilot Don Hoerstkamp met with the couple at Camdenton airport to make the exchange. 

“We hadn’t flown since August and I think we were both ready to make the donation to a good cause,” Grant Barnum said. 

With the Cessna, Wings of Hope has a couple options as to what the aircraft will be used for. One option would be to add the plane to their existing fleet for travel around the world. Hoerstkamp says that the organization has a number of planes of varying sizes, from single-seated homemade crafts to eight-seat commercial level. He says that Wings of Hope receives around 20 donations a year and every one of them helps to achieve their greater goals. 

The other opportunity for the Cessna would be sending it to auction where the proceeds of any sale made would be used in the organization's efforts. Grant says that knowing what their plane would be used for made the donation easier to exchange. 

“It took what may have been a bitter day, saying goodbye to our plane, and turned in into something wholesome,” Grant Barnum said.

Hoerstkamp flew the plane to the Spirit of St. Louis from Camdenton. This is where the main base of operation is for Wings of Hope. Barnum says he and his wife might consider renting another plane sometime for old time’s sake, but he sees his Cessna 210 as the last plane it will own for now.