We recently received a call on a Sunday from Kambaramba about Casper, a middle-aged man experiencing pain after a recent surgery. Since his case wasn’t life threatening, we explained to him that we were not able to fly him in that day; however, we might be able to the next morning. The next day, Chris, our Medical Director, followed up with Casper and told him to go to the nearest medical clinic in Angoram.
Pilot Nick Mosca was on his way to the hangar when we received another call that there was a baby born three months premature that needed to be brought in from the Angoram medical clinic. After doing some quick calculations, Nick determined we would be able to pick up Casper as well. We called Casper back to let him know that we would be on our way.
While preparing for the flight, a third call came in. This call was for a mom with a retained placenta who we would need to pick up after returning from our first flight. About noon, we took off for Kambaramba to pick up Casper and the premature baby. After safely landing and pulling up to the Sepik’s muddy banks, an entourage arrived carrying Casper. Nick strapped him and his wife in and was quickly airborne and headed to Angoram. After a short five-minute hop, Nick landed and was hailed by a nurse who was attending to the premature baby and her mother, Selatin. Quick medical aid was administered to both Selatin and her baby.
Praying for a safe flight and God’s mercy, Nick latched the doors and flew low to avoid pressure changes that could harm the baby. Nick skillfully landed the full plane back in Wewak where Chris was already waiting with the ambulance.
The next flight took only twenty minutes (which would have been a four-hour boat ride). Emil, one of our hangar staff, went along to help with loading the patient, and we landed on the lagoon at the village of Kaup about 3:30 pm. Gloria, who had a retained placenta, was in a lot of pain and needed assistance boarding the plane. Her caretaker, holding her newborn baby girl, climbed into the back seat. Emil prayed for Gloria, and we arrived back a little after 4 pm.
Since being admitted to the hospital, our ministry team has had the opportunity to visit and care for these patients and their families. Robert, our Hospital Ministry Assistant, has been faithful in sharing the story of Jesus with all three families. As for their physical well-being, Casper has made a full recovery and is back home in Kambaramba. Selatin and her baby girl are still recovering at the hospital. It looks like a long road ahead, as anyone who has had a premature baby knows, but she seems to be making progress. Gloria has made a full recovery and is also back in her village. We are grateful for God’s love and the power of prayer.