Mercy Flight https://www.thebatavian.com/ en https://www.thebatavian.com/themes/barrio_batavian/images/thebatavian_logo.png Mercy Flight https://www.thebatavian.com/ Local Matters © 2008-2023 The Batavian. All Rights Reserved. Tue, 27 Feb 2024 08:11:39 -0500 https://www.thebatavian.com/themes/barrio_batavian/images/thebatavian_logo.png Thu, 14 Dec 2023 19:52:00 -0500 Inadequate instruction possible cause of fatal Mercy Flight crash in Elba in April 2022 https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-owens/inadequate-instruction-possible-cause-of-fatal-mercy-flight-crash-in-elba-in-april
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April 26, 2022 file photo by Howard Owens

Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board Safety Board found no mechanical issues with a Bell helicopter operated by Mercy Flight that crashed during training in Elba on April 26, 2022.

The available evidence suggests, according to a final NTSB report, that an instructor did not provide adequate information to the pilot of the craft to recover from a maneuver, causing the Bell 429 to break apart mid-air.

The actions the pilot did take likely caused the main rotor blades to contact the tail boom, which caused the tail boom to separate from the body of the helicopter.

The pilot and trainer were working on dealing with a "vortex ring state," or VRS, which is a dangerous airflow condition that a pilot might encounter during flight.

Pilot James E. Sauer, 60, of Churchville, was being trained that day by Stewart M. Dietrick, 60, of Prosper, Texas. Sauer was the second pilot of the day to embark on a training mission with Dietrick.

The first pilot of the day told investigators he didn't think the VRS training went well.

"While in VRS, the pilot stated that he didn’t know why they were going so deep into VRS and that the instructor was just sitting there, 'hands on his lap,'" the report states. "So, the pilot, feeling uncomfortable at that point, had to exit this very high descent rate on his own rather than waiting for further guidance from the instructor pilot."

The report states that flight recorder data indicates that prior to the crash near Norton Road in Elba, there were multiple abrupt control inputs.  That data, combined with contact evidence found on the main rotor blades and tail boom after the accident, indicates the rotor blades hit the tail boom during the flight just prior to the crash.

"The parametric data and physical evidence observed during a postaccident examination of the wreckage revealed no evidence of any mechanical malfunctions or failures of the helicopter that would have precluded recovery from VRS," the report states.

To read the full report (PDF) click here.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-owens/inadequate-instruction-possible-cause-of-fatal-mercy-flight-crash-in-elba-in-april#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-owens/inadequate-instruction-possible-cause-of-fatal-mercy-flight-crash-in-elba-in-april Dec 14, 2023, 7:52pm Mercy Flight Inadequate instruction possible cause of fatal Mercy Flight crash in Elba in April 2022 Howard Owens <figure role="group" class="caption caption-div"> <div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img alt="mercy flight fatal accident elba april 2022" class="image-style-large" height="532" loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/2023-12/mercy-flight-accident-april-22.jpg?itok=LwDi2wQZ" width="800"> </div> </div> <figcaption><em>April 26, 2022 file photo by Howard Owens</em></figcaption> </figure> <p>Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board Safety Board found no mechanical issues with a Bell helicopter operated by Mercy Flight that crashed during training in Elba on April 26, 2022.</p><p>The available evidence suggests, according to a final NTSB report, that an instructor did not provide adequate information</p>
Genesee County's move for dedicated ambulance service with Mercy Flight 'a big step' https://www.thebatavian.com/jfbeck99272012/genesee-countys-move-for-dedicated-ambulance-service-with-mercy-flight-a-big-step
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Genesee County Legislators Gary Maha and Shelley Stein participate on the Ways & Means Committee Wednesday as County Manager Matt Landers, far right, reviews a new ambulance contract with Mercy Flight. 
Photo by Joanne Beck

Discussion of a new Mercy Flight contract for basic and advanced life support services was no big surprise, perhaps, on Wednesday, but was a big step forward nonetheless as the process continued past the Ways & Means Committee, Matt Landers said.

The county manager presented the $452,000 contract to the committee on its last leg of a journey to the full Legislature for approval. 

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https://www.thebatavian.com/jfbeck99272012/genesee-countys-move-for-dedicated-ambulance-service-with-mercy-flight-a-big-step#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/jfbeck99272012/genesee-countys-move-for-dedicated-ambulance-service-with-mercy-flight-a-big-step Nov 2, 2023, 8:08am Mercy Flight Genesee County's move for dedicated ambulance service with Mercy Flight 'a big step' jfbeck_99_272012 <figure role="group" class="caption caption-div"> <div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img alt="Gary Maha, Shelley Stein, Matt Landers" class="image-style-large" height="973" loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/2023-11/gary-shelley-and-matt.jpg?itok=SpS0tFG4" width="800"> </div> </div> <figcaption>Genesee County Legislators Gary Maha and Shelley Stein participate on the Ways &amp; Means Committee Wednesday as County Manager Matt Landers, far right, reviews a new ambulance contract with Mercy Flight.&nbsp;<br>Photo by Joanne Beck</figcaption> </figure> <p>Discussion of a new Mercy Flight contract for basic and advanced life support services was no big surprise, perhaps, on Wednesday, but was a big step forward nonetheless as the process continued past the Ways &amp; Means Committee, Matt Landers said.</p><p>The county manager presented the $452,000 contract to the committee on its last leg of a journey to the full Legislature for approval.<span>&nbsp;</span></p>
Genesee County strikes deal with two ambulance providers to cover all bases https://www.thebatavian.com/jfbeck99272012/genesee-county-strikes-deal-with-two-ambulance-providers-to-cover-all-bases/636552
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File photo of a then-new Mercy EMS ambulance in 2015. Parent company Mercy Flight will be contracting with Genesee County in a county effort to provide more "accountable" ambulance services moving forward. 
Photo by Howard Owens.

After taking several months to evaluate Genesee County’s issues and needs in regard to ambulance services for residents, county Manager Matt Landers delivered a solution this week that he believes will do the job.

Landers worked with Emergency Management Services Coordinator Tim Yaeger and county Attorney James Wujcik to establish a formal contract with Le Roy Ambulance Services and Mercy Flight, Landers told legislators during the Ways and Means meeting Wednesday.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/jfbeck99272012/genesee-county-strikes-deal-with-two-ambulance-providers-to-cover-all-bases/636552#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/jfbeck99272012/genesee-county-strikes-deal-with-two-ambulance-providers-to-cover-all-bases/636552 Sep 21, 2023, 7:55am Mercy Flight Genesee County strikes deal with two ambulance providers to cover all bases jfbeck_99_272012 <figure role="group" class="caption caption-div align-center"> <div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img alt="mercy ems ambulance 2015" class="image-style-large" height="534" loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/2023-09/mercyems-amublance-2015.jpg?itok=cCUQaiTP" width="800"> </div> </div> <figcaption><em>File photo of a then-new Mercy EMS ambulance in 2015. Parent company Mercy Flight will be contracting with Genesee County in a county effort to provide more "accountable" ambulance services moving forward.&nbsp;</em><br><em>Photo by Howard Owens.</em></figcaption> </figure> <p><span>After taking several months to evaluate Genesee County’s issues and needs in regard to ambulance services for residents, county Manager Matt Landers delivered a solution this week that he believes will do the job.</span></p><p><span>Landers worked with Emergency Management Services Coordinator Tim Yaeger and county&nbsp;Attorney James Wujcik to establish a formal contract with Le Roy Ambulance Services and Mercy Flight, Landers told legislators during the Ways and Means meeting Wednesday.</span></p>
County officials in talks with Mercy Flight about ambulance service https://www.thebatavian.com/joanne-beck/county-officials-in-talks-with-mercy-flight-about-ambulance-service/626926

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While at least one City Councilman has expressed concern about ambulance response times in the city of Batavia, Genesee County officials are mulling similar issues elsewhere, Manager Matt Landers says.

“My understanding is that Mercy Flight has a good response time. But there's going to be isolated incidents that inevitably happen because there could be a call for service somewhere else that happens to pull ambulances out. So my concern, honestly, is more of a response time in our rural areas in the county, where response times are greater than the nine minutes that are currently being experienced in the city of Batavia,” Landers said to The Batavian Wednesday. “So that is something that this Legislature and myself are aware of, and that there's a lot of issues out there that we're trying to tackle and work on.”

Landers clarified the current arrangement with Mercy Flight and Mercy EMS. The county provides “a minimum contract of $12,500 on an annual basis to go towards their Mercy Flight air, that's, the contract that we have in place with Mercy Flight currently,” he said, and there is no official contract for ambulance service. An article published Tuesday stated that there was a countywide contract for ambulance service.

“There was a county RFP issued but it wasn't for a county contract. It was something that was for individual towns, so they could contract specifically the Mercy Flights. Some did, some didn’t,” he said. “But Mercy Flight has built a base of operations here at Genesee County, they are here to stay, they are an asset to our community. But there is no current contract with Genesee County for any kind of ambulance service.”

The topic of ambulance response times came up during city budget talks Tuesday evening at City Hall. Councilman Paul Viele raised concern after hearing about a child getting stung by a bee last summer. After reportedly lengthy response time from Mercy EMS, city police ended up taking the child to the hospital for medical treatment, Viele said.

During the conversation, Council President Eugene Jankowski Jr. added that there’s been a countywide struggle to accommodate the need.

County officials are working with Mercy Flight to try and remedy the situation, especially in Genesee’s outskirts, Landers said Wednesday.

“We are in talks with Mercy Flight, and how potentially we can help,” Landers said. “I understand why people would think there might be a contract … we understand as a county that response times is a countywide issue. So Legislature and myself are exploring the issue currently and seeing what we could do to help improve those response times, primarily in our rural corners of the county. Less so in the city of Batavia.”

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https://www.thebatavian.com/joanne-beck/county-officials-in-talks-with-mercy-flight-about-ambulance-service/626926#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/joanne-beck/county-officials-in-talks-with-mercy-flight-about-ambulance-service/626926 Feb 2, 2023, 8:08am Mercy Flight County officials in talks with Mercy Flight about ambulance service jfbeck_99_272012 <p></p><div class="align-left"> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/matt_at_table.jpg?itok=Rup_c9Rs" width="460" height="396" alt="matt_at_table.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> While at least one City Councilman has expressed concern about ambulance response times in the city of Batavia, Genesee County officials are mulling similar issues elsewhere, Manager Matt Landers says. <p>“My understanding is that Mercy Flight has a good response time. But there's going to be isolated incidents that inevitably</p>
USDA approves loan for Mercy Flight to replace helicopter stationed in Batavia https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-b-owens/usda-approves-loan-for-mercy-flight-to-replace-helicopter-stationed-in-batavia/624400
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Mercy Flight is receiving a $3,043,000 federal loan to purchase a new helicopter that will be modified for medical service operations and stationed at the Genesee County Airport in Batavia, the USDA announced this week.

Mercy Flight has not been able to station a helicopter in Batavia since a fatal crash in Elba in April.  The crash of the Bell 429 helicopter claimed the lives of pilot James E. Sauer, 60, of Churchville, and Stewart M. Dietrick, 60, of Prosper, Texas.

From the press from the U.S. Department of Agriculture announcing several funding initiatives in Upstate New York:

USDA Rural Development New York State Director Brian Murray announced investments totaling more than $46 million across 10 projects throughout the state to expand market opportunities for rural businesses and enterprises. This is part of a national announcement where U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the Department is investing $981 million to help create new and better market opportunities and expand essential services for rural people, businesses and entrepreneurs in 47 states, Guam and the Virgin Islands.

“Rural people provide the everyday essentials our country depends on,” Murray said. “Under the leadership of President Biden and Vice President Harris, USDA is dedicated to helping people through job creation and expansion of entrepreneurial opportunities in the rural places they live. The partnerships we’re announcing today demonstrate USDA’s commitment to advocating for rural business owners and building brighter futures for residents and stakeholders in rural New York and throughout America.”

The funding will help keep resources and wealth made by rural people right at home through affordable financing and technical assistance. It will help rural Americans start businesses and allow small business owners to grow. It will also open the door to new economic opportunities for communities and people who historically have lacked access to critical resources and financing.  

Photo: File photo by Howard Owens of the Bell helicopter that crashed taken a few days prior to the accident during an emergency medical response in Batavia.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-b-owens/usda-approves-loan-for-mercy-flight-to-replace-helicopter-stationed-in-batavia/624400#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-b-owens/usda-approves-loan-for-mercy-flight-to-replace-helicopter-stationed-in-batavia/624400 Dec 10, 2022, 12:13am Mercy Flight USDA approves loan for Mercy Flight to replace helicopter stationed in Batavia Howard Owens <p><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/60/2022-11/merflightcrasjhapril242022.jpg?itok=VNg-ZjL8" width="460" height="306" alt="merflightcrasjhapril242022.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </p> <p>Mercy Flight is receiving a $3,043,000 federal loan to purchase a new helicopter that will be modified for medical service operations and stationed at the Genesee County Airport in Batavia, the USDA announced this week.</p> <p>Mercy Flight has not been able to station a helicopter in Batavia since a fatal</p>
Photos: Mercy Flight open house https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-b-owens/photos-mercy-flight-open-house/620406
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Mercy Flight/Mercy EMS hosted an open house at its facility on Call Parkway on Saturday, with Cub Scouts selling hot dogs, a craft room where kids could paint coupons, a basket raffle, a mum sale, games, and displays and apparatus from State Police, and fire departments from Town of Batavia, Stafford, Elba, Alabama, and Pavilion.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-b-owens/photos-mercy-flight-open-house/620406#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/howard-b-owens/photos-mercy-flight-open-house/620406 Oct 24, 2022, 6:11pm Mercy Flight Photos: Mercy Flight open house Howard Owens <p><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/60/2022-10/mercyflightoh2022bbb.png?itok=f5tMLWaw" width="460" height="307" alt="mercyflightoh2022bbb.png" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </p> <p>Mercy Flight/Mercy EMS hosted an open house at its facility on Call Parkway on Saturday, with Cub Scouts selling hot dogs, a craft room where kids could paint coupons, a basket raffle, a mum sale, games, and displays and apparatus from State Police, and fire departments from Town of Batavia</p>
USG donates GLOW Cup T-shirt prize to Mercy Flight https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/usg-donates-glow-cup-t-shirt-prize-to-mercy-flight/619808
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Press release:

The 9th annual GLOW Corporate Cup was run this August with over 700 participants registering for the annual 5K run and walk.  The race brought in $21,000 in support of the GLOW YMCA.  This money will support the YMCA Scholarship program, ensuring that no one is turned away from the Y due to their inability to pay.

In addition to the race, teams design their own T-Shirts and compete for the most creative design.  Each year the local Merrill Lynch office makes a $500 donation to the winning team’s charity of choice.  This year, US Gypsum won the contest for the second year in a row and elected to direct the donation to Mercy Flight of Batavia.  Mercy Flight is an independent, not-for-profit provider of emergency and non-emergency air and ground medical transport and supporting services; ensuring rapid, safe and cost-effective delivery of expert response teams. 

Pictured above from left to right are Duane Van Duuren of US Gypsum, Calvin Klemmer of Merrill Lynch, Jennifer Crotty, Flight Nurse for Mercy Flight, Blake Leddick of US Gypsum and Jeff Abbott, Flight Paramedic for Mercy Flight.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/usg-donates-glow-cup-t-shirt-prize-to-mercy-flight/619808#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/usg-donates-glow-cup-t-shirt-prize-to-mercy-flight/619808 Oct 14, 2022, 7:53pm Mercy Flight USG donates GLOW Cup T-shirt prize to Mercy Flight Press Release <p><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/60/2022-10/image003.jpg?itok=JqNHgVFk" width="460" height="345" alt="image003.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </p> <p>Press release:</p> <blockquote> <p>The 9th&nbsp;annual GLOW Corporate Cup was run this August with over 700 participants registering for the annual 5K run and walk.&nbsp; The race brought in $21,000 in support of the GLOW YMCA.&nbsp; This money will support the YMCA Scholarship program, ensuring that no one is turned away from</p></blockquote>
Sponsored Post: Join us for Mercy Flight EMS Open House on October 22nd https://www.thebatavian.com/lisa-ace/sponsored-post-join-us-for-mercy-flight-ems-open-house-on-october-22nd/619143

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https://www.thebatavian.com/lisa-ace/sponsored-post-join-us-for-mercy-flight-ems-open-house-on-october-22nd/619143#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/lisa-ace/sponsored-post-join-us-for-mercy-flight-ems-open-house-on-october-22nd/619143 Oct 6, 2022, 12:00pm Mercy Flight Sponsored Post: Join us for Mercy Flight EMS Open House on October 22nd Lisa Ace <p><a href="https://www.mercyflight.org"><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/7438/2022-09/mercyflightspfall22.jpg?itok=c9IShequ" width="460" height="598" alt class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </a></p>
Mercy Flight announces return of major annual fundraiser in September https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/mercy-flight-announces-return-of-major-annual-fundraiser-in-september/608656
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Press release:

In the wake of enduring a tragic loss in April, Mercy Flight is announcing today that it will host its signature fundraiser again this fall. The BASH for Mercy Flight at Buffalo RiverWorks will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2022.

“We continue to provide access to high-quality emergency medical transportation, and holding our BASH fundraiser is another way that we can help sustain our lifesaving mission,” said Scott Wooton, Executive Vice President. “This fundraiser is crucial for us as it helps offset the ever-increasing costs of providing Emergency Medical Service for all those in need.”

Wooton adds, “While we all continue to grieve the terrible loss that occurred in April, we know our community still need us, and we still need our community. Our friend Jim Sauer will forever hold a special place in our hearts, and we look forward to honoring his life again as part of our event on September 24th.”

Tickets for The BASH, featuring Nerds Gone Wild, DJ Milk, a spectacular Skylighters fireworks show, food, beverages, silent auction, and much more, are available starting at $50 each for a four-pack, $65 each for a two-pack, and $75 for an individual ticket. Designated driver tickets are also available for $35. To purchase tickets now, please visit MercyFlightBASH.givesmart.com.

For information on VIP Tickets/Sponsorships, please contact Elaine Duquette at (716) 626-5808, extension 1358 or eduquette@mercyflight.org. 

Photo: File photo from 2022 by Howard Owens.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/mercy-flight-announces-return-of-major-annual-fundraiser-in-september/608656#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/mercy-flight-announces-return-of-major-annual-fundraiser-in-september/608656 Jun 17, 2022, 12:02pm Mercy Flight Mercy Flight announces return of major annual fundraiser in September Press Release <p><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/60/2022-06/mffundraiserjune0222.jpg?itok=JbbhpV6c" width="460" height="306" alt="mffundraiserjune0222.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </p> <p>Press release:</p> <blockquote> <p>In the wake of enduring a tragic loss in April, Mercy Flight is announcing today that it will host its signature fundraiser again this fall. The BASH for Mercy Flight at Buffalo RiverWorks will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2022.</p> <p>“We continue to provide access to high-quality</p></blockquote>
Mercy Flight to resume air operations tomorrow https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/mercy-flight-to-resume-air-operations-tomorrow/604360
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Press release:

After a period of voluntary pause in its air ambulance operations, Mercy Flight’s team of dedicated helicopter emergency medical professionals will resume their lifesaving service at 7:00AM tomorrow May 7.

Mercy Flight President, Margaret Ferrentino, states, “We continue to grieve and to mourn the terrible loss we experienced April 26th. A piece of Mercy Flight’s collective heart has been forever changed, but we know that our patients still need us. It is our duty and our honor to work beside our partners to be there for those in need of air ambulance service, and we know without a doubt that getting back in the air to help them is what Jim would want us to do. Our employees have banded together during this tragedy like never before, and our helicopter maintenance staff has truly gone above and beyond to assure the mechanical airworthiness of our remaining fleet.”

Scott Wooton, Executive Vice President, adds, “We have spent every minute since last Tuesday’s tragic accident ensuring that all of our team members are properly cared for and confirming that our two remaining helicopters are completely safe and operationally sound. Exhaustive internal and third-party maintenance inspections have indicated that N506TJ and N508TJ are fully functional and ready to resume their lifesaving work.”

All of Mercy Flight’s employees, Medical Directors, and members of its Board of Directors would like to thank everyone who has expressed their support throughout this difficult time. The flowers, cards, messages, donations, and beautiful displays of orange and blue have been so thoughtful and encouraging. While there are simply too many to name, and many have remained anonymous, the specific efforts of Mercy Flight Central of Canandaigua, NY to provide backup air ambulance coverage to our service area have been nothing short of extraordinary. Mercy Flight and all of its constituents owe a great debt of gratitude to Mercy Flight Central. 

Photo: File photo by Howard Owens.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/mercy-flight-to-resume-air-operations-tomorrow/604360#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/mercy-flight-to-resume-air-operations-tomorrow/604360 May 6, 2022, 4:32pm Mercy Flight Mercy Flight to resume air operations tomorrow Press Release <p><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/60/2022-04/mercyflightopenhouse2014-2.jpg?itok=zTJwqPA8" width="460" height="307" alt="mercyflightopenhouse2014-2.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </p> <p>Press release:</p> <blockquote> <p>After a period of voluntary pause in its air ambulance operations, Mercy Flight’s team of dedicated helicopter emergency medical professionals will resume their lifesaving service at 7:00AM tomorrow May 7.</p> <p>Mercy Flight President, Margaret Ferrentino, states, “We continue to grieve and to mourn the terrible loss we experienced</p></blockquote>