First on the Scene: Life Flight

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Life is a precious and valuable thing, when that is injeopardy, a select group of first responders go above and beyond to save everylife they can. The crew of Baptist Life Flight 4 put their lives on the linedaily to care for some of the most critical patients.

"You are responding to people's worst moments and being ableto make a difference to them, being there in death, being there in life, I meanthat's two of the biggest moments I think, is the critical point of whensomeone is mortally injured being able to be there in situations for people andbeing able to help them," said Ricky Pittman, Flight Nurse-Paramedic.

The crew responds to a wide variety of things, ranging fromvehicle accidents to explosions to cardiac patient transport calls.

"The procedures, the advanced knowledge and procedures thatwe are able to do, that comes in to play initially, but once we implement thosethings then it becomes a time factor," said Pittman.

Emotions and stress can run high day after day, along withthe emotional toll the different scenes take on the crew.

"Each one is unique in its own way, whether it's flyingsomeone you know, flying a gravely injured child," said Pittman. "We all areparents and so it makes it a little harder when you deal with them," saidPittman.

Talking with one another as a crew or having quiet alonetime after a call is sometimes the best outlet of expression to the dailyscenes.

"We put ourselves through so many things that we can't saywe aren't affected, but we have learned to deal with it effectively," saidPittman.

Regardless of the outcome from scene to scene the crewcontinues in the most intense of situations.

"We are very aware of the fact that we can't save everyone,"said Pittman.

In the end, the crew member's genuinely like helping peopleany way they can.

"Every trip that I go on, whether I go on a ground trip, orI go in the air, what I do to help that person, I give it my all, every time,"said Pittman.

This job is not just about passion and adrenalin, it is alsoa way of life.

"From the first moment I stepped into an aircraft, liftedoff the roof of a building, I knew this is what I was going to do for the restof my life," said Pittman.