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Me & my aircraft - long range and large business aircraft: JFI owner donates Sinatra's Gulfstream
JFI Jets owner and Long Island resident Arik Kislin is donating his Gulfstream II business jet to Wilson Technological Center at Republic airport in Farmingdale, New York.

JFI Jets owner and Long Island resident Arik Kislin is donating his Gulfstream II business jet to Wilson Technological Center at Republic airport in Farmingdale, New York. The Gulfstream, once owned by Frank Sinatra, will have an active retirement as a training jet for future aviation mechanics in the Western Suffolk BOCES aviation maintenance technology prog-ramme at Wilson Tech's campus.

The 1968 model G-II accommodates 12 passengers and has a range of over 3,000 miles. Its two Rolls Royce engines power the aircraft to a cruise altitude of 45,000 feet and a speed of 520 miles per hour. The aircraft was designed and engineered by Grumman Aircraft in nearby Bethpage, New York.

“This jet will provide both high school and adult students with more opportunities for hands-on learning about jet instrumentation and engines,” says Dr Michael Mensch, coo for Western Suffolk BOCES. “We are extremely grateful to have this jet with such a historic past added to our aviation maintenance technology programme.”

Karen Bowden, principal of Wilson Tech's Republic airport campus, adds: “This donation will certainly help students prepare for their Federal Aviation Administration exams, helping them to earn FAA licenses in airframe and power-plant for greater job opportunities.” Kislin owned the aircraft for seven years and operated it all over the world. Prior to that, the aircraft was owned for a time by singing icon Frank Sinatra and sub-sequently by actor Harrison Ford, an accomplished aviator himself.

“I love this aircraft and truly hate to see her grounded, but after 44 years of service her time has come,” Kislin says. “I am pleased to know she will continue to be of service to the Wilson Center and the people of Long Island as an educational tool and a proud reminder of the aviation heritage of this region.”

JFI Jets is a worldwide provider of aircraft management and charter services with fixed base operations and part 145 certified repair centre.