In memory of COPA member Thomas F. “Pittsy” Pitts – Benefit Raffle

As many of you know, one of our fellow COPA members and former Marine, Thomas F. “Pittsy” Pitts was fatally injured on Monday, July 12th when his Cirrus SR20 crashed while attempting to land at Horace Williams Airport in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Tom’s flight to Chapel Hill was so that his passenger, Kyle Henn could be with his family in Raleigh, NC to mourn the loss of his older brother, Nathan Henn. Nathan was a 25-year-old aid worker who was killed in Uganda the night prior to Tom’s accident, when a terrorist bomb went off among crowds watching the World Cup finals. Tom had never met Kyle until a mutual friend asked him to fly Kyle to his parents the following day.

Tom’s passion for flying was rivaled only by his passion for working with, and helping others. He worked tirelessly on many military and veterans causes, including the Veteran’s Airlift Command (VAC), being Chairman of the annual Toys for Tots 5K Run/Walk in Delaware, Chairing the annual Memorial Day ceremony at a local Veterans Post, the Wounded Warriors, and a liaison to the Gold Star Families. He was also an active volunteer for Autism Delaware. Tom lived life to the fullest, and challenged everyone around him to live each day as if it were their last, not only to have fun, but to help others who were less fortunate.

In memory of Tom, Lightspeed Aviation (special thanks to Matt Mathias) has generously offered two (2) brand new Lightspeed Zulu headsets to raffle within the COPA community. Deb Markwood, Tom’s widow has requested the proceeds from this raffle be donated to the Veterans Airlift Command (VAC), where Tom was a volunteer. The VAC provides free air transportation to wounded veterans and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes, through a national network of volunteer aircraft owners and pilots. Learn more by clicking here.

You can follow Deb’s journey through her grieving process, and learn more about “Pittsy”, by reading her blog on the COPA website. It is titled: Looking Backward, Looking Forward, a Widow’s Perspective (

**To be eligible for a chance to win one of these two headsets, all you need to do is make a donation to the Veterans Airlift Command (VAC) in memory of Tom. **

Here’s what to do:

  1. Visit the Veterans Airlift Command (VAC):

  2. Navigate to the Donor’s Page:

  3. Complete your Donor Information. The amount you choose to donate is completely at your discretion.

  4. In the “Donor Recognition” field, cut & paste the following: Deb Markwood, Lightspeed Aviation, COPA

  5. In the “Donation Honoree” field, cut & paste the following: Thomas F. “Pittsy” Pitts

  6. Important Once you have made your donation, you will be given a 17 digit confirmation number. Reply to this BLOG with the last four digits of this confirmation number

  7. The two individuals who post numbers closest (absolute) to the Pa Lottery Big 4 number selected on December 12th (5 month anniversary of Tom’s passing) will each win a Brand New Lightspeed Zulu headset


  1. The VAC is a 501©(3) nonprofit organization.

  2. Every donation receives an equal chance at this raffle.

  3. Reply to this BLOG with the last four digits of your donation confirmation number after you have made your donation.

  4. Donations are based 100% on the honor system.

  5. Headsets will be shipped to the winners directly from Lightspeed Aviation (special thanks to Matt Mathias)

I went on the Veteran’s Airlift Command website to make a “Token Donation” just to make sure everything worked per the instructions. For reference, pasted below is 17 digit confirmation number I received. Accordingly, all I would need to do is respond to this post with the last four digits of my confirmation number. Just like this:


This will now serve as my “Raffle Number.”

For reference, here’s what my donation confirmation read:

This Payment will appear on your credit card statement as “VETERANSAIR”

Confirmation Number: 97700409PV8767924 Placed on Nov 4, 2010

Thanks Bob.

Works as advertised.

My validation code ends with 4311. Damn, it’s no 1729.

Great, Sanjay - thanks for getting things started!!

The last four digits of my confirmation are 4284.

God bless.

Thanks for organizing this. My last four digits are 1037.

Paypal confirmation slightly different: 1172L

My 4 digits are 0540

I just learned that the Pa Lottery Big 4 number is selected twice each day, Mid-day and Evening drawings. This is perfect, we’ll use the Mid-day number to raffle headset #1 and the Evening number to raffle to Headset #2. So that everyone has a chance, the winner of the first headset will not be eligible for the second.

Hey I don’t want to be left out!!! Here are my four digits… (I understand Tom had a sense of humour.)

My last 4 digits are 4841


Randy Lambeth 5738

Hondo 2492

I can’t tell you how happy I am that I didn’t ask of a single digit. I can only imagine…

Alex - I’ll use the numbers in front of the letter. Your raffle will be: 1172

Thanks for participating!

Same here - Paypal - 2471Y

I assume 2471 is the number.


Barry (and anyone using PayPal). Yes - the four digits preceding the last letter in your confirmation number will be used as your raffle number.

Thanks for everyone’s participation thus far. This is off to a fantastic start!