MA friends, I need your help today

Kevin Kuwik, one of my brother’s best friends from Notre Dame, is a remarkable guy. He’s currently a basketball coach at Ohio State who served in Iraq (more on that here), but that’s not what I’m writing about today.

Last year, on the day before his brother’s wedding in Buffalo, Kevin’s girlfriend was flying to Buffalo to join the celebration. She was on flight 3407 from Newark to Buffalo. The plane crashed, killing all aboard.

In the year that’s followed, Kevin has devoted his free time to lobbying Congress to pass common-sense legislation concerning commuter flight training. It’s really staggering how senseless Lorin’s death and those of the other 49 passengers (and one person on the ground) was. Simple things – like ensuring pilots know what to do in cold weather, knowing not to sleep overnight in chairs at airport lounges – could have easily avoided two inexperienced pilots flying into sub-zero temperatures late at night and taking 50 lives.

ESPN covered Kevin’s work last month, talking about a moving pre-game speech he gave after head coach Thad Natta made patches for the team to wear honoring Lorin Maurer’s memory:

http://espn.go.com/videohub/player/embed.swf

Kevin and several families of the survivors met with Sen. Chuck Schumer yesterday, who’s about to send a bill to the floor of the Senate (details). Sen. Scott Brown is a possible co-sponsor, and any help you can give to showing Sen. Brown what this bill would mean could help convince him to sign on as a co-sponsor.

This is not a partisan bill. This is common sense legislation, and would help prevent additional senseless loss of life of future air travelers.

If you live in Massachusetts, here’s what you can do:

  1. Call Scott Brown’s DC office 202-224-4543, identify yourself as a Massachusetts resident (they’ll ask for your ZIP code), and say “I am calling for the Families of Flight 3407, and am asking Senator Brown to please co-sponsor S.1744, Senator Schumer’s bill that would raise minimum pilot qualifications.  250 hours is not enough – you have to have more experience to be a licensed hairstylist.”
  2. Call Scott Brown’s Boston office 617-565-3170, identify yourself as a Massachusetts resident (they’ll ask for your ZIP code), and say “I am calling for the Families of Flight 3407, and am asking Senator Brown to please co-sponsor S.1744, Senator Schumer’s bill that would raise minimum pilot qualifications.  250 hours is not enough – you have to have more experience to be a licensed hairstylist.”
  3. Email Scott Brown’s staff at comments@scottbrown.senate.gov, identify yourself as a Massachusetts resident (include your address at the end), and write “I am emailing on behalf of the Families of Flight 3407, and am asking Senator Brown to please co-sponsor S.1744, Senator Schumer’s bill that would raise minimum pilot qualifications.  250 hours is not enough – you have to have more experience to be a licensed hairstylist”

Thank you.