After departing John F. Kennedy Airport in New York, Justin landed at Hewanorra International, where the airport authorities rolled out the red carpet for the captain, who was a pilot “for 20 years, and was promoted to captain this summer.” He has been working for JetBlue for eight years.
His parents and wife were aboard the flight as well.
Right after the landing, a ceremony honoring the captain happened. During his speech, Justin talked about how he has loved aviation since childhood. He said that no matter what he had going on if a plane flew by, he’d stop to admire it.
“Back then I’ve always known that I wanted to fly and wanted to be an airline pilot,” Justin told the audience. “Though I have done it before as a first officer, to be able to do this as a captain is a big deal for me. A bigger deal is to have my parents on that flight, as well. As well as my wife.”
Justin expressed that he looked forward to continuing his philanthropic work in 2023 since the pandemic hindered him from doing so. The captain wants to visit schools to inspire the youth to follow their dreams and push for more Black pilots.
“I’m so looking forward to not only inspiring people to aviation but whatever your dream is it is my mission in life to give you tips and pointers on how to be able to identify those dreams and fulfill those dreams,” he said. “Because everyone has been born with a purpose, and I really believe that fulfilling your purpose is what gives you the best fulfillment of joy in life.”
Justin’s wife and parents were recognized during the ceremony with gifts.
Two children dressed as a pilot and a flight attendant handed Justin a wooden plaque that read, “Congratulations on your promotion to captain and on your maiden landing of JetBlue 881. Dec. 14, 2022.”