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Families to visit scene of Netcare helicopter crash for private ceremony

26 January 2021 - 10:36 By iavan pijoos
A Netcare 911 medical helicopter crashed in KwaZulu-Natal last Thursday, claiming the lives of all five people on board.
A Netcare 911 medical helicopter crashed in KwaZulu-Natal last Thursday, claiming the lives of all five people on board.
Image: Twitter / via @Abramjee

The families of a pilot and four health-care workers killed when a medical helicopter crashed in KwaZulu-Natal last week will on Wednesday visit the site of the crash, Netcare said in a statement.

Netcare group CEO Dr Richard Friedland said the families of the deceased and their colleagues from Netcare and National Airways Corporation (NAC) will be transported from Johannesburg to the site.

The medical helicopter crashed near Bergville last week Thursday, claiming the lives of all on board.

They were identified as Dr Kgopotso Rudolph Mononyane, an anaesthetist; Dr Curnick Siyabonga (Sia) Mahlangu, a cardiothoracic surgeon; Mpho Xaba, a specialist theatre nurse for cardiothoracic and transplant; Sinjin Joshua Farrance, an advanced life support paramedic at Netcare 911; and pilot Mark Stoxreiter.

Netcare 911 MD Craig Grindell said a special ceremony has been planned in close consultation with the family members of the fallen heroes.

Grindell said it was an “incredibly important and meaningful” visit for the families and colleagues of the fallen heroes.

“It is a strictly private and sacred ceremony and we ask on behalf of the families, that their right to appropriately mourn in private is respected.”

Grindell said no media would be permitted at the event to respect the privacy of the families.

“In the days since the tragic event, we have continued to provide our full support and assistance to the next-of-kin of the deceased. As Netcare we carry the families and loved ones of our dear deceased colleagues in our hearts with love and respect, and will ensure that their wishes are not only respected but carefully carried out during this extremely difficult time,” Grindell said.

According to Friedland, technical teams from Bell, the helicopter manufacturer, and Rolls-Royce, the manufacturer of the helicopter’s engines, were expected to arrive in the country to assist with the investigation.

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