Mercy Air officials and employees were recognized Tuesday Dec. 4 for 26 years of service the business has provided to Loma Linda University Children's Hospital, a hospital spokeswoman announced Friday.
Mercy Air began working with LLUCH in 1986 providing helicopters and isolets, the incubators used to transport infants in helicopters, Briana Pastorino of Loma Linda University Children's Hospital said.
The business has met hospital and patients needs "with small airships barely big enough to transport the medical team to the current EC-145, which is equipped with cutting edge technology and safety features and is spacious enough for the three-man medical transport team plus the patient and a family member," Pastorino said.
Victor Bannis, respiratory transport coordinator at LLUCH, has observed the evolution of airships with Mercy Air for 18 years, Pastorino said.
"Mercy air has always been extraordinarily accommodating to our team, allowing us to transport those kids and even adults who are most in need of treatment at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital and Medical Center," Bannis said.
Roy Cox, one of the first Mercy Air pilots to work with the hospital and now regional director of logistics for Mercy Air, was singled out for his service to Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, Pastorino said.
In addition to transporting patients, over the years Mercy Air has donated helicopter rides for radiothons and the annual LLUCH Foundation Gala, Pastorino said.
Loma Linda University Children's Hospital is billed as the only dedicated pediatric hospital in San Bernardino, Riverside, Inyo and Mono counties.