The Ackerman Dining Room

Albert Charles Ackerman, Jr. was born in 1933 and had a difficult early life being abandoned by his father at age fourteen.  He often sold his blood to help support a broken-hearted mother.  There was little direction in his life until the chance event of a solo flight in a Piper J-3 Cub in 1950, giving his life a new direction.  He knew from the moment he first touched the controls that becoming a pilot would be his only goal.

After some disappointing setbacks in his early flying days, he miraculously survived a horrific crash in the ocean.  He attributes his survival to a higher source which granted him a second life leading to a career in aviation involving sixty three years of flying famous celebrities and world leaders in over one hundred different types of airplanes and helicopters.

In retirement, Al spent five rewarding years as an Angel Flight pilot.  He flew needy patients, unable to bear the cost of transportation, to far away health care institutions.  He is still an active octogenarian pilot and has recently published a well-received book titled My Journey West.  He is a new member of the United Flying Octogenarians.  The UFO is an international, non-profit organization with over 1500 members around the world.

Al and his lovely wife Debbie were the first residents of Rainmakers and they have become affectionately known as “The Mayor and First Lady.”  At the opening of the new Rainmakers Clubhouse in September 2013, the dining room was dedicated in their honor.  The next time you are having dinner in the Ackerman Dining Room, listen carefully and you might catch Al telling a story from his book.