FXB carries the initials of François-Xavier Bagnoud, a helicopter pilot who specialized in rescue operations and who dedicated his life to helping others. Born in 1961, he was the son of Albina du Boisrouvray and Bruno Bagnoud.
By the end of his secondary studies, Francois-Xavier was already a licensed and experienced pilot. An aeronautics enthusiast, he entered the Department of Aerospace Studies of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in 1979. After excelling in his studies, he obtained his engineering degree and published a reference manual: “Theory of the Helicopter for Private Pilots”.
His passion for flying was such that he became the youngest professional Instrument Flight Related airplane and helicopter pilot in Europe at age 23. This passion, combined with an extreme generosity, led him to join his father’s company, Air Glaciers, in Sion, Switzerland. Within three years, he carried out some 300 rescue flights in the Alps, as well as the deserts of Africa.
He lost his life in 1986 at the age of 24 years, during a helicopter-borne mission in Mali. In 1989, his mother Albina du Boisrouvray, his family and their friends founded the Association François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB International) and the FXB Foundation in order to pursue, in the field of development, the rescue missions that he led and to perpetuate the values of generosity and compassion that guided the life of François-Xavier.