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LifeLink launches get-to-know peers event

Nate Lebeck is LifeLink III flight paramedic and base operations manager in Alexandria. (Photo by Amy Chaffins)

On Monday, LifeLink III, will open its hangar door to local medical, public safety and first responder professionals for the opportunity to look inside the air ambulance operation and meet the staff.

Alexandria's LifeLink III is one of five air medical transport bases in the state and, on average, the helicopter is launched 30 to 50 times per month. Most often, those trips are for transporting a patient from one hospital to another, but the crew also makes scene-landings to bring a patient to a hospital.

Monday will allow the professionals to do some training and meet each other, putting faces with names and getting to know the people they work with.

"We'll bring them out and show them what we do on our end," said Nate Lebeck, LifeLink III flight paramedic and base operations manager. "Many times when we land somewhere it's quick with critical patients so we don't get a lot of time to visit. So this sets the time to sit down and meet people, show them the helicopter and get together for some food in a relaxed atmosphere."

The open house begins at 5:30 p.m. and is open to all people who work in emergency medical services, hospitals, public safety or as volunteer firefighters or first responders in the surrounding areas.

Last year, the open house drew a crowd of about 100 people, Lebeck said.

"The better relationships we have with the people we work with, the better we can serve patients," he said.

LifeLink III Facts

--10 full-time employees: 5 nurses, 5 paramedics

--On-call 24-hours per day, 365 days per year.

--Helicopter can be airborne within 10 minutes of being called out.

--The local base tallies 30 to 50 flights per month. Summer is their busiest time.

Amy Chaffins

Amy Chaffins is a journalist working for the Echo Press newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota.

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