BUFFALO, N.Y. — Mercy Flight's helicopter emergency teams will be back in action, starting Saturday morning.
"We continue to grieve and to mourn the terrible loss we experienced April 26th," Mercy Flight president Margaret Ferrentino said Friday in a statement. "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."
The victims in that crash were identified as Mercy Flight pilot James Sauer, 60, Churchville, New York, and Bell Helicopter flight instructor/pilot Stewart M. Dietrick, 60, of Prosper, Texas.
"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," according to Scott Wooton, Mercy Flight's executive vice president.
"Exhaustive internal and third-party maintenance inspections have indicated that N506TJ and N508TJ are fully functional and ready to resume their lifesaving work."