SCOTTSBLUFF, NEB. – It happened to Dave Petersen of Bayard, an unexpected accident that placed him on an Air Link air ambulance helicopter.
In early January Petersen, a member of the Morrill County Farm Bureau, was on his horse, Lil' Bit. The horse thought she should go home and made a sudden move in a different direction, catching him off guard and throwing him from his horse. He landed on his right side, breaking four ribs, his collar bone, and puncturing his right lung.
His wife, Nancy, called for a rescue unit and a neighbor, Thomas Blackstone, drove by and stopped to help. When the rescue unit arrived, they thought the roads were too rough to transport him safely, so they called in the Air Link helicopter, which flew Dave eight minutes to Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff.
“Everyone involved has been wonderful and treated me with the utmost respect and compassion. My neighbor, Thomas, was first on the scene and may well have saved my life. Ryan Dalbey, Paul Safford, Jessica Green, Monty Betancur, and Ashley Shultz; volunteers with Bayard Fire Department, knew exactly what needed to be done, and were the ones who called for the Air Link helicopter. I have to say the Air Link staff were the best in the world,” Petersen said.
Petersen signed up for an AirMedCare Network (AMCN) membership about a year ago through Nebraska Farm Bureau. “It was $65 a year and if you are a Farm Bureau member it was only $55. The cost of that eight-minute flight would have been $34,907. Because I was a member, I never got a bill. It was the best $55 I’ve ever spent,” Petersen said.
Nebraska Farm Bureau is working with AMCN to bring attention to this life-saving service by hosting Super Heroes | Super Health on Saturday, March 24, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the EagleMed hangar on the west edge of the Scottsbluff Regional Airport. It will be a fun event for families to learn about health and wellness education, screenings, will provide additional information about the member benefits of Nebraska Farm Bureau and AMCN.
“We are excited to highlight the real super heroes of Scotts Bluff County, our Health Care professionals, and first responders. We felt like incorporating those community leaders would be a good way to get people’s attention and get them to focus on health and wellness in a fun and interactive environment,” said Lisa Klutz, Nebraska Farm Bureau’s director of member benefits, database, and fleet management.
Community members will be able to meet, and talk to local heroes from EagleMed, Air Link, Scottsbluff Fire Department, Scottsbluff Police Department, and Valley Ambulance as well as tour aircraft, fire trucks, and police response vehicles. Food and refreshments will also be provided.
“We have a long history of a great partnership with Nebraska Farm Bureau. Our last member event was so successful we decided to open this one up to the whole community. We hope to educate our community on health and wellness, as well as financial health related to emergency air medical transport and the AMCN membership program. It’s just a fun day for everyone to get together, learn, and take advantage of the benefits our community offers,” said Michelle Beeney, local membership sales manager for the AMCN.
The Nebraska Farm Bureau is a grassroots, state-wide organization dedicated to supporting farm and ranch families and working for the benefit of all Nebraskans through a wide variety of educational, service and advocacy efforts. More than 61,000 families across Nebraska are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve rural and urban prosperity as agriculture is a key fuel to Nebraska’s economy. For more information about Nebraska Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit www.nefb.org.