WATCH | Netcare 911 helicopter unit pays emotional tribute to medical team who died in crash
The Netcare 911 helicopter unit has mourned the loss of five staff who died in a helicopter crash, honouring their lives and the work they did.
The aircraft crashed near Bergville, in northern KwaZulu-Natal, on January 21, claiming the lives of all on board.
Anaesthetist Dr Kgopotso Rudolph Mononyane, cardiothoracic surgeon Dr Curnick Siyabonga (Sia) Mahlangu and transplant theatre nurse Mpho Xaba were en route to a hospital in Hillcrest, west of Durban, to transfer a critically ill patient to Netcare Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg for specialised care when the crash took place.
Also killed were Sinjin Joshua Farrance, an advanced life support paramedic at Netcare 911, and pilot Mark Stoxreiter, who worked for National Airways Corporation.
In a video shared on social media, a convoy of ambulances, paramedics, doctors and nurses can be seen driving in honour of their fallen colleagues.
“There is no greater act of humanity than to lose one's life in attempting to rescue the life of another,” said Netcare group CEO Dr Richard Friedland.
Watch the full video below
Last week, families of the deceased visited the accident site, where a “moving ceremony” was held for the “five extraordinary individuals”.
Netcare described the day as a painful one punctuated with deep shock and disbelief.
The group said it was a long, emotional day for the families, loved ones and colleagues of the deceased.
The pilot's wife, Candice Stoxreiter, opened up about how she told her two children that their father will never come back home.
The pair met through mutual friends in 2002 and had been married for more than 10 years.
“We have a very open relationship with our children and I very caringly shared the news that daddy won’t be coming home,” she told TimesLIVE.
Candice said she found out later on the day of the accident that her husband had died in the crash.
“I was filled with disbelief and thought I just had to find my husband and bring him home,” she said.