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92-Year-Old Shelton Veteran Returns To The Sky Over Candlewood Lake

Paul Hurd, a 92-year old U.S. Army veteran, takes flight.
Paul Hurd, a 92-year old U.S. Army veteran, takes flight. Video Credit: UMHcaring
Paul Hurd, a 92-year-old veteran living at Crosby Commons in Shelton, recently took a helicopter flight over Candlewood Lake.
Paul Hurd, a 92-year-old veteran living at Crosby Commons in Shelton, recently took a helicopter flight over Candlewood Lake. Photo Credit: Contributed
(Front Row) Paul Hurd (Back Row L to R) Nick, Pilot at Centennial Helicopters, Kelly Coppola, Activities Director at Crosby Commons, Cristina Sinanian, daughter of Paul, and Lori Pisani, Executive Director of Crosby Commons.
(Front Row) Paul Hurd (Back Row L to R) Nick, Pilot at Centennial Helicopters, Kelly Coppola, Activities Director at Crosby Commons, Cristina Sinanian, daughter of Paul, and Lori Pisani, Executive Director of Crosby Commons. Photo Credit: Contributed

SHELTON, Conn. -- Paul Hurd, a 92-year old U.S. Army veteran, has always loved flying. During the war, he spent time in Italy, flying in helicopters and even jumping out of them.

Now a resident of Crosby Commons Assisted Living in Shelton, Hurd often takes advantage of the different trips offered by the community.

When visiting the Sikorsky Helicopter Museum, he took an interest in aviation and showed delight touching the controls of a grounded copter. Kelly Coppola, recreation director of Crosby Commons, began to think how she could incorporate Hurd's love of flying into a Journey of Dreams wish and make it possible for him to fly again.

"Paul is a true pleasure to spend time with. He is a very active member of our community, taking advantage of activities and out trips alike. He always has something positive to say and finds the good in all around him," Coppola said.

With Journey of Dreams in mind, Coppola asked Hurd if he would ever “Take Flight” again. Before she could even finish her sentence, he belted out, “YES!”

Accompanied by his daughter Cristina and Marketing Coordinator Chelsea Sayegh, Hurd boarded a Robinson R44 Helicopter out of Danbury Airport and embarked on a scenic 45-mile trip over Candlewood Lake.

After Hurd’s flight, the group, including Coppola and Crosby Commons Executive Director Lori Pisani, enjoyed an Italian lunch, Hurd’s favorite, at Carl Anthony’s Restaurant in Monroe.

“This was a great treat! I was really looking forward to it,” said Hurd.

Crosby Commons Assisted Living Community is located on the Wesley Village Campus in Shelton The award-winning “Journey of Dreams” program was created on the campus to offer opportunities for personal growth and fulfillment of individual dreams.

To learn more about Crosby Commons or other dreams that have been fulfilled for residents, visit www.crosbycommons.org or call 203.225.5024.

To view video of Hurd's incredible day, click here .

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