Bringing Families Together

Community lifelines

In the July issue of American Way, LAX Aviation Maintenance Technician Wendell Ellis shared with customers the important work he and his colleagues do every day to keep American Airlines aircraft moving during the busy summer travel season, with the ultimate goal of bringing families together.

“Nothing is more important than family, and if there’s one thing I enjoy most about my job, it’s helping loved ones spend time together,” he said.

Wendell, who had worked at Tech Ops – Tulsa for many years, moved with his wife Paula to Los Angeles to be closer to their son, actor Jay Ellis, who currently stars in the HBO series, Insecure. “While I loved working at the Tulsa base, my love for my son, Wendell Jr., is even greater,” Wendell said. “I’m so proud of what he’s accomplished, and I chose to transfer to our maintenance team at LAX a few years ago to be a little closer to him and to enjoy some sunshine.”

Jay was also featured in that same issue of American Way, where he talks about the influence his parents and growing up in Oklahoma has had on him. To commemorate the family issue, Jay recently surprised Wendell with a framed copy of both of their stories during Wendell’s shift at LAX. Paula joined in on the celebration.

Surprises at a major airport with an actor are never easy, but the team pulled it off. “I am truly humbled right now,” Wendell said. “It was a great surprise, something I’ll never forget.”