GANDER, NL - In a hanger tucked away behind the 9 Wing Gander Air Force base, a Beech 1900D is being stripped down to its ribs.
The maintenance crew is busy carrying out an inspection and replacing or upgrading equipment on the aircraft.
The interior has been gutted and the plane is being painted to give it a fresh look.
It is work rarely seen by the public, but an inside look at EVAS (Exploits Valley Air Services) Air/Gander Flight Training highlights the benefits the company has brought to the area.
EVAS was started in June 28, 1993, with one plane and one employee. Today, by adding one skill set and capability after another over its 24-year run, the company now has 27 planes in its fleet and more than 220 employees - with most working and living in Gander and surrounding area.
And as the company continues to network and showcase its capabilities - specializing in the Beech 1900D - it sees continued growth, said president/CEO Patrick White.
In 2017, EVAS overhauled and painted 15 aircraft from around the province and across the country.
"It's been none stop ... a 24/7, 365 (day) shift in Gander and another one in Halifax," said White. "And there are times we have two shifts going in Gander."
Ongoing maintenance, flights and flight training - including international flight training for the past decade -has all lead to the establishment of a successful company, and that means sustainable employment for families, said White.
"It's amazing (to be able to do that), after a while it's kind of what drives you," he said. "And when the company is doing well it has a really positive impact on the region."