By Lauren Lewis
January 5, 2018
As family, friends, and admirers of pilot Bill Kinsinger hold their collective breath waiting for news of his whereabouts after his plane crashed Wednesday while en route to pick up an elderly dog.
Tragically, Kinsinger was approximately 20 minutes away from his destination when his plane crashed over the Gulf of Mexico. The kind-hearted Pilots N Paws volunteer was on his way to pick up Masaru, an 11-year-old husky who needed to be taken from Texas to Oklahoma for medical treatment and was just hours from being put down.
A Facebook page dedicated to saving Masaru also confirmed that the dog was not on the plane when it went missing.
Pilot Justin Blackburn was among several fellow pilots that continued Masaru’s rescue, landing the dog safely at 8:30 p.m. Thursday at Wiley Post Airport in Oklahoma City.
“Whatever happened to Bill you know, he did it for this dog out of the goodness of his heart,” Blackburn told News 9. “It would have been sad to me to not have that completed.”
“A very emotional Pilots N Paws transport will land any minute at Wiley Post Airport (KPWA), PNP Pilot Bill’s home airport in Oklahoma City. The pilots chose to fly to KPWA in Bill’s honor,” the non-profit organization that transports rescue animals from kill shelters to foster families and other no-kill shelters, posted on Facebook. “Having flown PNP rescue missions each week since he first joined in July 2014, Bill is a very special part of our organization.”
“We’ve long said that flying rescue animals is a labor of love for our pilots; rescuing animals is Bill’s passion,” the organization said in a statement further explaining that Kinsinger’s Oklahoma City home-base enabled him to complete many rescues from “Texas where there is a large number of homeless animals, to Colorado where there is a large number of available adoptive homes.”
The statement went on to share a remarkable story of a time when Bill drove to Arkansas to pick up seven dogs that he originally committed to flying before he found that his plane was damaged. He brought them to his home the next night to join another dog he was fostering in “a custom-built log cabin doghouse.”
“Please keep Bill and his family in your prayers,” Pilots N Paws continued on Facebook. “We are holding out hope for a miracle that he will be found safe.”
WAN joins Pilots N Paws and countless others in praying for this special man’s safe return.
WAN will continue to update this story as the Coast Guard continues to search for Bill over the Pacific Ocean.
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