Awards for ontribution to pre-hospital care

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Five members of Kent Air Ambulance’s life-saving crew have been awarded Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medals in recognition of their contribution to pre-hospital care.

Director of operations Leigh Curtis presented the medals to pilots Blaine Ashurst and Kevin Goddard, and clinical mnanagers Gary Wareham, Rob Wilkinson and Richard de Coverly.

Captain Ashurst, from Herne Bay, joined the charity in 1999 after serving for 23 years in the Army and became chief pilot the following year.

He has been flying for more than a quarter of a century and has also worked as a helicopter instructor.

Kevin retired from the Armed Forces after a career spanning more than 23 years and joined the Air Ambulance in December, 2007.

Gary, from Chatham, is the longest-serving crew member, having joined in 1996 when the helicopter was based at Rochester Airport.

He was involved in the introduction of the current MD902 Explorer aircraft and the charity’s move to its headquarters at Marden in 2000.

Rob was a former electrician at Chatham Dockyard before training as a registered nurse in 1982 at Medway Maritime Hospital in Gillingham.

e first worked on the Air Ambulance in 1999 and became a registered paramedic in 2005 – the same year doctors were introduced on to the helicopter. He has lived in Maidstone for 12 years with his wife and three children.

Richard qualified as a paramedic in 1999 and before being selected to join the Critical Care Paramedic (CCP) program he was a Paramedic Team Leader at Tunbridge Wells. He lives in Cranbrook with his wife Sarah and sons Harry and Thomas.

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