Today, we would like to share the thoughts from one of our employees about a transport that recently touched her heart. Every day we are inspired and healed by the patients we meet and the families who trust us to care for their loved ones. So when employees take the time to write up their feelings about the work we do… we are honored to share it.
“Daily business operations require us to read things like respiratory failure, neuroblastoma, quadriplegia, tracheostomy, skull fracture, dementia and multiple references to rehabilitation, long-term care and hospice. Every one of these words and phrases is part of a larger story detailing various degrees of trauma and suffering that we try to minimize for our patients as they fly with us on an air ambulance transport. Although each case is as difficult as the next, every once in a while one particular story sticks in our hearts because it hits so close to home.
At Angel MedFlight we often work with the US armed forces and are privileged to transport soldiers for various reasons. Last week we were asked to transport a US Army Ranger. He had served four tours in Afghanistan; this soldier was hit by a dismounted IED (improvised explosive device) blast the day after his birthday… his 27th birthday.
“…recognizing that I volunteered as a Ranger, fully knowing the hazards of my chosen profession…I accept the fact that as a Ranger my country expects me to move further, faster and fight harder than any other…Surrender is not a Ranger word.” All of these are words and phrases from the Ranger Creed.
This Ranger voluntarily signed up for this life, putting the welfare of the nation before his own, without thought of recognition or gain. While Rangers are elite soldiers called on to conduct some of the most complex, special ops missions the military faces; they are individually someone’s son – someone’s “baby boy”. Perhaps that’s the part of this story that hit home for me. As a parent, I am gifted with my children for a short period of time in hopes of building a strong foundation of strength-of-character, integrity, morality and independence. In what seems like a flicker of time, I will nudge them out of the nest to watch them become the adults I helped shape them to be; praying I have done my job.
I can only assume that this particular soldier’s mother was full of mixed emotions when she learned her son would be a US Army Ranger. It’s natural for mothers to want to keep their children sheltered from danger and pain and free from fear. We try and teach them to be strong, courageous men who face all life events with a steady gaze, wise choices and a committed stand. As a mother, I am confident this woman must have been proud that she raised a son who was so selfless he was willing to give his life for his country. At the same time I know she must have been terrified at the very real possibility she could lose him.
He will be in my thoughts as the weeks go by and I hope for his progressive improvement. I know that the medical facility he went to is one of the best in the nation and they will take great care of him. I am thankful every day I can witness stories like this and work daily to help “heal” people in some small way through my efforts at Angel MedFlight. In the process, I find my life is enriched through knowing them even for a brief moment.”