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Andre J. Boucher
Andre's love of ballooning started just over 20 years ago while on his way to work he saw a hot air balloon in the sky and decided to follow it. Upon it's landing Andre asked if he could buy a flight he just had to go up in one of those things. After his first hot air balloon flight was over he said to the pilot "that's it where's the store I need to buy one of these!" The pilot then informed him that it did not quite work that way and if he was serious he would give him lessons so that he could eventually earn a pilots license of his own. Andre began to crew for him and fly with him every chance he got. After a year Andre was able to take his solo flight and pass the FAA regulated pilots test. Though Andre has been flying for 24 years he has only been a commercial pilot since 1992. Before then he would only fly his family and friends. Andre has approximately 2,100 hours as Pilot in Command to date!
Andre believes in spreading the word about ballooning his love for the sport is so strong , he has even helped several other New Englander's including his son Jason Boucher of Infinity & Beyond receive their Pilots license.
Andre has always loved aviation but because of his motion sickness he could never really get involved with it. Because the balloon moves with the wind instead of against it there is no motion and Andre was finally able to become a member of the aviation community.
Andre has flown in Balloon Festivals all over the country and he has piloted balloons in many of the states including New Mexico, Alaska, Montana, New York, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont, Maine, and New Jersey. He has even flown in parts of Canada like Quebec, Ottawa and New Brunswick. Andre has also taken his balloon over seas to fly at a balloon rally in France.
Andre is always willing to lend a helping hand to other balloonists and during the summer of 2009 he was a crew member for The Disney Pixar film UP. He spent the weekend in Boston preparing the 45 foot high aircraft once the system was setup he spent the rest of his time there helping the twenty plus other crew members give tethered rides to the public during the promotion of this film. You can view a video clip at:UP VIDEO
Another interesting fact about Andre is that he along with his son Carl, brother Denis and friend John traveled from Alaska to Nova Scotia on snowmobiles in 56 days for a total of 10,252 miles on March 3, 1992. This ride scored them a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.