Andre’s love of ballooning started over 35 years ago when, on his way to work, he saw a hot air balloon in the sky and decided to follow it. Upon its 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 pilot’s 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 pilot’s test. Though Andre has been flying for 35+ years, he has only been a commercial pilot since 1994. Before then, he would only fly his family and friends. Andre has approximately 2,600 hours as Pilot in Command under his belt 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 Englanders, including his son Jason Boucher of Infinity & Beyond, receive their 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 overseas to fly at a balloon rally in France. He has also traveled south of the border and flown in Mexico.