Area dentist flew around the world to raise money for Alzheimer’s disease

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Councilman Joe Coyle, left, with Dr. Edwin Galkin, right, and his wife Bobbie during a council meeting on Dec. 27.KATHY CHANG/STAFF
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Dr. Edward Galkin and Marty Balk arrive at Hilo, Hawaii, from Christmas Island in the Kiribati South Pacific Island chain. PHOTO COURTESY OF DR. DR. EDWARD GALKIN
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Dr. Edward Galkin and Marty Balk flew around the world on a 1976 Cessna 210 eight-seater, single-engine airplane, from Oct. 26 to Nov. 30, 2018.PHOTO COURTESY OF DR. DR. EDWARD GALKIN
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Councilman Joe Coyle, left, with Dr. Edwin Galkin, right, and his wife Bobbie during a council meeting on Dec. 27.KATHY CHANG/STAFF
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Dr. Edward Galkin and Marty Balk arrive at Hilo, Hawaii, from Christmas Island in the Kiribati South Pacific Island chain. PHOTO COURTESY OF DR. DR. EDWARD GALKIN
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Dr. Edward Galkin and Marty Balk flew around the world on a 1976 Cessna 210 eight-seater, single-engine airplane, from Oct. 26 to Nov. 30, 2018.PHOTO COURTESY OF DR. DR. EDWARD GALKIN

EDISON – Dr. Edwin Galkin and his wife Bobbie live by a certain philosophy: Never leave anything on your bucket list, do it all.

And that is how Bobbie quelled her nerves as her husband, 82, fulfilled a bucket list item – flying around the world on a 1976 Cessna 210 eight-seater, single-engine airplane, which began on Oct. 26 and ended on Nov. 30, 2018. The trip marks three times he has flown around the world, the first trip in 1988 and his second trip in 2004.

Galkin set out with his co-pilot Marty Balk. The longest leg of the trip was 2,500 miles from Japan to Alaska. The pair spent two nights on average at every destination.

For all the trips, Galkin has raised funds and awareness for different causes. The third trip was to raise funds for the Chicago-based Alzheimer’s Association in honor of a family member who has suffered with the disease. Galkin said he set out to raise $25,000, which he has since reached.

“It’s something I have been thinking about for a year,” Galkin said of his third trip. “It was a great journey and it’s great to be home.”

The Edison Township Council presented Galkin with a resolution recognizing his tremendous feat at a meeting on Dec. 27.

Bobbie said her husband’s longest flight over water was 14 hours and 10 minutes.

“Overall, he flew 21,000 miles and spent 144 hours in the plane,” she said.

Resident Lois Wolke said she has known Galkin and his wife for more than 40 years.

“He is my dentist,” she said. “I followed his flight on his website. You can check out the altitude he was flying at, where he was flying and the speed he was flying.”

Council members praised Galkin for accomplishing a remarkable feat and raising awareness for Alzheimer’s disease.

“There are many families dealing with [Alzheimer’s],” Council vice President Leonard Sendelsky said.

As Councilman Joe Coyle presented the award to Galkin, he joked they “would not catch him flying around the world especially in a 1976 single-engine plane.”

“Maybe a jumbo commercial plane,” he said.

Galkin was born in Newark and grew up in Hoboken. He attended the University of Connecticut, received his dental degree from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine in Massachusetts and received his periodontal training at New York University College of Dentistry.

He served two years as a captain in the U.S. Army Dental Corps stationed at Fort Hood, Texas. He was a clinical assistant professor at the New Jersey College of Medicine and Dentistry. He is a past president of the New Jersey Society of Periodontists and a current member of the American Dental Association, Middlesex County Dental Society, Northeastern Society of Periodontists, New Jersey Society of Periodontists, American Academy of Periodontology, and the American Academy of Osteointegration.

Galkin has been in practice in the Woodbridge area since 1965, specializing in periodontal disease and implants. He is a staff member at the Hackensack Meridian Health JFK Medical Center in Edison.

He and his wife have two children, Michael and Marcie, and five grandchildren.

For more information about the Galkin’s flight and his causes, visit www.aroundtheworldagain3.com.

Contact Kathy Chang at kchang@newspapermediagroup.com.