Today we introduce Craig Chaplin, helicopter pilot based at our Durban operation. Craig joined the AMS family in July this year. Here’s a look into his world … 

Tell us about yourself: “I was born in Pinetown in KwaZulu-Natal. I grew up in Kloof which is just inland of Durban. I used to spend most of my time on the beach trying to surf. After school I spent two years in the SA Navy, I was a gunner on the Strike Craft. I then went on to study Dental Technology. After I qualified I worked as a technician for a number of years while travelling to Europe and America and being a snow board bum. When I returned from America I decided to become a pilot and get a “real” job. I learned to fly with JNC Helicopters at Virginia in Durban. I have worked in the off shore industry for the past nine-ten years and am very happy to be home now as out of the rotational lifestyle.”

Why did you choose to join the AMS? “From when I started learning to fly I always wanted to use my profession to help people and I can’t think of a better company than AMS to do that with.”

If you could master one skill you don’t have right now, what would it be? “Motorcycle mechanic.”

What do you do in your spare time? “Ride motorbikes, bicycles, I am trying to remember how to surf and I try to keep fit.”

What might someone be surprised to know about you? “I used to play the violin.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “I feel proud to be able to help people who are less fortunate than I am.”

What is on your bedside table? “I don’t have a bedside table.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Umm, I can’t think of five but I’d definitely like to have dinner with Lance Armstrong. I want to ask him why he lied. And I want him to give me back my money for the books of his that I bought.”

When your friends/family find out what you do, what do they say or ask? “Guaranteed to at some point to be asked…When does a pilot start to sweat?   When the fan turns off” and then the uncomfortable silence as they wait for you to laugh.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “Being able to help my folks buy their house.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “Brain Surgeon.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Chocolate. Lindt Toasted Sesame.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “See above.”

What is the one quality you feel best describes you? “Perseverance.”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “You don’t always have to be right.”

Do you have a life philosophy? “Have as much fun as possible.”

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