A medical emergency in Costhorpe marked a significant double milestone for the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance service.
For when the ambucopter and crew set off, it was the charity’s 20,000th mission and came only hours after its official 25th birthday.
The helicopter covered the 28-mile journey to Costhorpe in only 13 minutes, and its clinical team was able to provide vital pre-hospital care for the patient before returning to base just an hour later.
The mission was typical of the emergency help the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance has provided since its first call on May 13, 1994 when airlifting a patient to hospital.
Today, it can provide high-quality treatment, such as advanced clinical procedures, open-chest surgery, anaesthesia and blood transfusions, directly at the scene of an incident.
To mark its 25th anniversary, a celebratory event was held for special guests, who included crew, trustees and former patients.
Paramedic Roger Linnell said: “I am extremely proud to have played a part in this pivotal moment for the charity.
“It’s mind-blowing knowing that we have been called to 20,000 missions over the last 25 years.
“There is nothing more satisfying than making a positive impact on someone who is, typically, having the worst day they will ever experience.
“After meeting some of the patients we cared for, it was so humbling to hear how they have overcome their ordeals and now want to give something back to support the charity.”
The service receives no direct government funding and so relies on public fundraising to stay in the air. Each mission costs about £2,500.
However, throughout this 25th anniversary, it will be working towards being on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week.