A French Valley pilot hoping to raise $1 million for his charity will set out Monday to break his own world record for a "nonstop" helicopter flight by flying from San Diego to Georgia and back.
Johan Nurmi, 58, of Corona, plans to leave Brown Field in San Diego at 6 a.m. and fly without stopping -- save for bathroom breaks -- to Savannah-Hilton Head International Airport, arriving back at San Diego less than 70 hours later.
He will have three co-pilots in his Robinson R44 Raven II helicopter.
"We love long cross-country flights," said Nurmi, a U.S. citizen who was born in Sweden of Finnish parents.
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Part of the reason for the trip is to garner publicity for his charity, the Christian Foundation for Starving Children. Nurmi has a goal of $1 million, the money to be given to 10,000 families.
The other pilots are Roy Sciortino, 52, of DeLuz; Tyler Kim, 28, of Murrieta; Bill Laggner, 26, of Fallbrook. They have only about six years experience between then, although Nurmi, who owns a helicopter school with his wife, Monica, at French Valley Airport, has been a pilot for 20 years.
Last year, Nurmi broke the record by accomplishing his feat in 70 hours and 19 minutes. He wants to shave off those extra minutes this year.