HIS dedication to the job was there, up until the very last minute of his life.
Helicopter paramedic Mick Wilson was killed during a complex winch rescue of two canyoners on the NSW south coast on Boxing Day last year.
It is a dangerous job, according to Orange intensive care flight paramedic and station manager Nathan Croft, who completed his initial training with Mr Wilson.
“He sustained severe injuries and helped his patient right until the end,” Mr Croft said.
Knowing his injuries were life threatening, Mr Wilson gave his torch to the people he was trying to rescue and directed them to wait for another paramedic crew, according to Mr Croft.
Unfortunately paramedics like Mr Wilson are unable to get life insurance, so his wife Kellie and three young children only received a death and disability payout along with workers’ compensation.
“After he died his colleagues in Sydney arranged an appeal,” Mr Croft said.
The appeal in Sydney on June 16 raised $80,000 for Mr Wilson’s family, and three Orange businesses supported the event.
“To see the community get behind him and his family is fantastic,” Mr Croft said.
One of the major raffle prizes was a two-night stay for two people at Turner’s Vineyard, donated by Orange Tile Market.
Orange Helicopters and Orange Limousines also got on board, donating a joy flight and limousine ride in Orange.
Owner Dean Brus, who also works as a firefighter, said emergency service personnel were like family.
He said he had worked alongside the Orange helicopter paramedics for many years.
Sydney couple Chris and Karen Hodson won the trip to Orange and took advantage of their prize this week.
Mrs Hodson has known Mr Wilson’s wife Kellie fo nine years and says she is amazed by the level of community support.
“Thank you to everyone, it was a such a great cause,” she said.