Upcoming Event Brings Vietnamese Adoptees Together in Celebration

“Operation BabyLift” Evacuated War Orphans 47 Years Ago

Eugene, Oregon

GARDEN CITY, NEW YORK - EUGENE, OREGON, March 28, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Pan Am Museum Foundation and Holt International are proud to present Operation BabyLift, a special event on April 24th at 6pm EDT to mark the 47th Anniversary of the evacuation of Vietnamese war orphans to loving families in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, France, and Germany. The evening will include a staged reading of the play, “Children of the April Rain” by William Bryant Doty. 

The event will be held at the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City, New York. In attendance will be adoptees, adoptive parents, volunteer flight attendants, as well as volunteer medical professionals who were a part of the evacuation 47 years ago. Also, Al Topping will be in attendance, Pan Am's Director of South Vietnam & Cambodia, along with members of his Saigon staff who organized the evacuation flights. The operation was directed by U.S. President Gerald R. Ford in the final days of South Vietnam right before the country fell in 1975. 

“Bringing these groups together for this special program shows you the massive positive impact this one historical event had on generations of people to this day,” said Linda Freire, Director of the Pan Am Museum.

Pan American World Airways sent two Boeing 747s jumbo jets, one charted by Holt International, to assist in the evacuation. This event is sure to be a unique celebration and reunion of many involved in the Vietnam BabyLift. 

“It’s poignant that the same tragic circumstances facing children in Vietnam during the BabyLift are being repeated today in the Ukraine,” said Phil Littleton, President & CEO, Holt International Children’s Services. “We are proud to partner with the Pan Am Museum for this important commemorative event. Our commitment to serving children suffering through trauma and hardship is as strong today as it was 47 years ago.”

The evening will serve as an important touchstone for the many parents and adoptees whose lives were changed forever by PanAm’s contribution to the BabyLift.

“I'm deeply grateful to the Pan Am volunteer crews for all they did to evacuate the children who were in harm's way. These unsung heroes, who saved many lives, accomplished one of the greatest humanitarian efforts of the 20th century. I'm pleased “Children of the April Rain”, the “Vietnam BabyLift Play”, will be presented as a staged reading at the program and send my best wishes to all involved” said Lana Mae Noone, Mother of Pan Am flight adoptee and one of the contributors to the play being presented.  

For those interested in attending this very special celebration in remembrance of this historic humanitarian effort, tickets are $75.00 per person and includes food and complimentary beer and wine. To purchase tickets, visit www.ThePanAmMuseum.org or call 1- 888-826-5678. We respectfully request that you RSVP and purchase tickets by April 18th. 

Adoptees, adoptive parents, flight attendants, Pan Am staff, as well as representatives of Holt International and Pan Am Museum are available for interviews upon request. To download related images, visit our Google Drive.  

About Pan Am Museum 
Opened in 2016, the mission of the Pan Am Museum is to educate, celebrate, and inspire present and future generations by preserving historical and diverse personal stories of Pan American World Airways.

About Holt International
Holt International seeks a world where every child has a loving and secure home. Since Holt’s founding in 1956, the organization has worked towards its vision through programs that strengthen and preserve families that are at risk of separation; by providing critical care and support to orphaned and vulnerable children; and by leading the global community in finding families for children who need them and providing the pre-and post-adoption support and resources they need to thrive. Always, Holt focuses on each child’s unique needs —keeping the child’s best interest at the forefront of every decision. To learn more about Holt, visit https://www.holtinternational.org.






Contact Data