The Award was inaugurated in honour of the late Walt Darran in 2014. Walt Darran (1940-2013) truly embodied the Aviator pioneering spirit and continued to be active in the international aerial firefighting community right up to his untimely death in 2013. After nineteen years seasons as an air tanker captain, Walt finally retired from flying aerial firefighting missions in 2009 and took up the mantle of President of the Association of Aerial Firefighters, now known as the Associated Aerial Firefighters (AAF), committing the last decade of his life to promoting training and improving flight safety for aerial firefighting pilots.
Over his 48 year professional pilot career he achieved 17 type ratings and flew 25,000 hours with 1,500 hrs on helicopters. He had an aviation career and life that most pilots can only dream of, and one that would be hard to duplicate today by the most ambitious pilot. To find out more about Walt please visit the Award's website.