1986, François-Xavier Bagnoud lost his life in a helicopter
accident while flying over the Mali desert, not far
from Gao. The Foundation and Association which bear
his name have been created by his friends and parents,
Albina du Boisrouvray and Bruno Bagnoud, in order to
perpetuate his mission and preserve the radiance of
was born September 11, 1961, in Geneva, Switzerland,
the son of Albina du Boisrouvray and Bruno Bagnoud.
His boyhood was spent in Paris, where he graduated from
The American School. By the time he completed high school,
he was a licensed and accomplished pilot.
1979 François-Xavier entered the Aerospace
Engineering Department at the University of
Michigan in Ann Arbor. He earned his BSE in only three
years and was a member of an honorary engineering society.
He also founded the student branch of the American
Helicopter Society at the University.
1981, during his studies at Ann Arbor, François-Xavier
wrote a manual on "Helicopter Theory for Private Pilots"
which has been widely used and appreciated by pilot
trainees in Europe.
passion for flying impelled François-Xavier to become
at age 23 the youngest professional IRF pilot in Europe
of both airplanes and helicopters. That same dedication,
combined with a compassion for others in need, led him
to join his father at Air Glaciers, the largest private
Alpine rescue and mountain flying company, located in
Sion, Switzerland. Within three years, in addition to
his regular piloting responsibilities, he completed
some 300 successful rescue missions in the Alps and
in two Paris Dakar races.
François-Xavier flew a fatal helicopter mission on January
14, 1986 in the desert near Gao, in Mali, West Africa.
The François-Xavier Bagnoud Foundation was born out
of the desire of his parents, stepfather, and close
friends to continue the flow of love and concern between
François-Xavier and themselves and to continue his caring