[31] XRFDS (Plane Doctor - Support Crew)

Team Captain: Jan Ende (race LAME)
Other Members:  Penny Ende, Murray Korff
 
Aircraft: Cessna 180 VH-FDH
 

Jan Ende Team Leader is who has a chronic disease known universally as aviation. This started very early in his life but blossomed when he was 16 years old and started an aircraft maintenance apprenticeship and also commenced flying. This led to a fervor that borders on a religion, to that end you may come across him with his prayer wheel in his hand!

This affliction will lead to a small service that he will conduct at the morning briefings - a prayer that the aircraft will be cared for by you. Also there will be a prayer that all of you must learn off by heart - when you arrive at your destination, taxi in and park - the prayer is MASTERS OFF MAGS OFF!

Penny Ende trained as a nurse, and was a pom, but has since been neutralized and has the papers to prove that she is now an Aussie!

She met Jan in Wyndham in the Kimberly, when they flew for the RFDS. They married and moved to Derbs-on-the-marsh, where they lived and continued to fly for a few years. They had two boys who unfortunately both inherited the aviation sickness. The Kimberley was their territory, beautiful country.

Murray Korff is coming along to keep the insanity going. Afflicted with the same chronic illness of aviation, he has been flying for the last 35 years, and is still learning about aviation. He has a media background and has worked for such luminaries as the late Messrs Bond and Packer. Acquiring a pilots’ licence was seen as a means of smoothing the furrow in the brow and the soaring blood pressure, but requires continuing remedial application.

Cessna 180 VH FDH is the only rejuvenated member of the team. It was found in a farmer’s hay shed in December 1993, it was to be a project for our retirement, but we asked the RFDS if we could restore it to RFDS specs – and they agreed on the condition that we were to go in the first Outback Air race as the flag ship!

Jan flew FDH in 1966 in the days of black and white in the Pilbara, so this is why our team is called XRFDS because we are!