Arthur “Artie” Fullan started his aviation maintenance career with American Airlines legacy carrier Allegheny Airlines on May 21, 1962 as employee No. 3263. Through the industry’s ups and downs, he’s worked at just three airports, all in the Northeast: Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) in New Jersey, John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York and currently, Philadelphia International Airport (PHL). Over 58 years, his safety record has been exemplary.
But at the world’s largest airline, he’s still No. 2.
That’s fine by him — he continues to earn new accolades, including the most coveted and prestigious award for an Aviation Maintenance Technician: the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award. On Dec. 7, American and the Federal Aviation Administration presented the award to Artie at an event in Queens, New York, attended by his family, friends, company leaders and colleagues.
The Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award is named after the Wright brothers’ mechanic and recognizes individuals who have exhibited professionalism, skill and expertise for at least 50 years in the aviation maintenance profession. Stringent requirements for the award include zero FAA violations in that 50 years of service; 30 of those years spent as a certified mechanic, repairman or avionics technician; and three recommendations.
For the presentation, Artie also had a requirement of his own. “I wanted him here,” said Artie. The “him” was Artie’s special guest, Azriel “Blackie” Blackman, who is American’s most senior mechanic with an unprecedented 75 years of service. Blackie is based at JFK, and Artie wanted to come to him as a sign of respect — just the motivation needed for a New Jersey-born, PHL-based mechanic to celebrate such a milestone in New York.