This Week's Story

Legendary pilot, Dwayne King, takes gospel to isolated people in Alaska and Siberia.

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

Dwayne King - Vision for a Pioneer, part one

This summer I had several hours to visit Kingdom Air Corps (KAC) and interview the almost legendary Dwayne King of Alaskan and Siberian fame. The visit included meals, Dwayne’s unexpected visitors, and one on one conversations with him. I was intrigued as I watched him advise a student how to repair rather than replace a plane part. It was a classic MacGyver solution to a problem.

KAC is led by Dwayne and started in 1999 with the vision of training pilots to bring the message of Jesus Christ to people who live in places difficult to reach. Great skill, quick thinking, and flexibility are essential. Landing strips, weather conditions, mountain passes, and danger upon the ground can bring extreme challenge.

One evening, as I attended a Bible conference among many Ahtna friends in Alaska, Dwayne joined us; dropping into a land of mountains, fast-moving ice-cold rivers, and forest of drunken trees. The Copper River Valley of Alaska, July 2023!

He brought young men and women from Kingdom Air Corps, where they were in training. They arrived in five small airplanes and two vehicles.

Their presence—tall and smiling, arrested me. I watched intently as they entered the simple dining hall building of the Wrangell Mountain Bible Conference on Ahtna land. They soon were eating at long tables and talking easily with the people they were meeting.

Supper was followed with a joyous service in a longhouse chapel. The aviation trainees led the music with a piano, violin, and enthusiastic singing. They presented no show at which an audience stared. They and everyone on the long benches in the room joined in singing. Sometimes the singing was in English; sometimes it was in the Na-Dené language, the traditional language of the Copper River area of the Ahtna people in Alaska.

Dwayne was fun to watch. He informally joined the singers on the platform. His arms and hands were conductor batons energetically jabbing the air and moving with the music.

After the music there was sharing of problems and victories as people in the audience spoke of how Jesus had made a difference in their lives. There was no fancy talk. Later Huron Claus was the invited speaker. He is half Mohawk Indian and half Kiowa. His speaking is humble and helpful.

I was impressed that Dwayne and his team listened attentively. They were part of the evening, not demanding any special attention. This is a key component of KAC vision: learning to be part, to be servants, not stars.

The same evening the Kingdom Air Corps returned to their base in the natural beauty of the King Ranch 81 miles northeast of Anchorage, Alaska.

Next week we will explore Dwayne’s adventurous exploits as he grew.

This is Barbara Steiner delighted to share Kingdom Air Corps and Dwayne King with you. Please excuse my laryngitis.

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