Captain Tom Bunn worked on the first fear of flying program at Pan Am until founding SOAR in 1982 to develop more effective methods in dealing with fear of flying.
Boeing 767 as flown by Captain Tom Bunn
The first fear of flying program was started at Pan Am by Captain Truman "Slim" Cummings. Captain Tom worked with him on that program until founding SOAR in 1982 to develop more effective methods for dealing with flight problems. This led to graduate school at Fordham University where he earned a Masters Degree with top honors, and several years of postgraduate study at the Gestalt Center Of Long Island, the New York Training Institute For Neurolinguistic Programming, and The Masterson Institute. He was licensed as a therapist in 1990.
Roaming the Internet, I found Captain Tom Bunn, a retired United Airlines pilot turned social worker who founded SOAR Seminars on Aeroanxiety Relief. Over the phone, Bunn explained the desensitization exercises he uses to help anxious fliers master their fear. His sessions also familiarize folks with aviation training and procedure. This helps, he pointed out, because fearful fliers are highly intelligent, with extremely vivid imaginations. What gets them into trouble often gets them out. Flattered and hopeful, I signed up for a private, two-hour session (at $95 an hour) at his home office in Trumbull, Connecticut.