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Family of Kyra McKinley praise Air Ambulance

THE family of Kyra McKinley, who tragically lost her life following a road collision this summer, have praised the work of the Air Ambulance NI (AANI) which administered vital care to Kyra at the scene. 
 
  Kyra, 21, from Omagh was airlifted to hospital by the service following a two vehicle road traffic collision on the Deverney Road on August 18. 
 
Sadly, Kyra passed away several days after the incident, but her family are hugely thankful for the amazing work of the AANI and the care they provided to Kyra both at the scene and during her transportation to hospital.
 
“Kyra got top class care from the minute the air ambulance landed, they brought with them a consultant as well as paramedics which meant Kyra was receiving hospital treatment at the scene,” said Kyra’s sister Alex.
“They kept her alive.”
 
 The AANI is a crucial service, especially for those in the Omagh area who, following the closure of the Tyrone County Hospital acute services in 2009, must travel over 25 miles to the nearest hospital.
 
The air ambulance can reach any part of the North in approximately 25 minutes,  providing the rapid response vital in any emergency situation. 
 
Patients can be transported to hospitals within the golden hour, greatly increasing their chances of survival.
“We couldn’t be more thankful for the work of the AANI, we feel indebted to them, they gave us more time with Kyra which was so precious,” continued Alex. 
 
“We got three days to spend with Kyra, to say our goodbyes and for that we will always be grateful. 
 
“They kept Kyra alive, and her organs functioning, this meant she was then able to donate her organs. So not only did their great work help Kyra that day, it had a knock on effect and now other people have benefited too.”
 
 AANI came into operation in July 2017, and since then it has provided advanced, pre-hospital critical care to over 450 emergencies in the North. As a charity, the AANI relies entirely on support from the public for vital aspects of the service such as pilots, helicopters and fuel.
 
Kyra’s family have been fundraising for the AANI ever since her accident, collecting over £1,000 at the wake alone. 
It costs £2million a year to keep this vital service operational, and the family hope to raise at least £5,500 to cover the daily cost of the service. 
 
Kerry Anderson, head of fundraising for AANI said, “We have come such a long way over the past year and are extremely grateful for the generosity and support of the people of Tyrone to date. 
 
“Without this ongoing support and without much needed donations, we will be grounded and the service will not be able to operate.
 
“The service might just one day save your life or the lives of your loved ones. That’s got to be worth supporting.”
 
 After a very successful first year, AANI are celebrating their very first Air Ambulance Week. 
This annual campaign is an opportunity to celebrate and promote the great work undertaken by air ambulance charities both locally and on a national scale. 
 
 To find out more about upcoming events, how your company can get involved or how you can help fund a life-saving mission, visit www.airambulanceni.org or call 028 9262 2677.
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