Updated statement as of 4:00 pm Eastern Time, December 26, 2011
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Dec. 26 — A helicopter transporting two members of Mayo Clinic’s transplant team crashed this morning while traveling to Shands at the University of Florida in Gainesville to procure an organ. The medical team consisted of Mayo Clinic cardiac surgeon Luis Bonilla, M.D., and procurement technician David Hines. A helicopter pilot who was not employed by Mayo also died in the accident. No patients were on board.
“Our deepest sympathies go out to the families of those involved in this tragedy. This is a great loss to the Mayo Clinic family and the transplant community,” said William Rupp, M.D., vice president of Mayo Clinic and chief executive officer of Mayo Clinic in Florida.
“As we mourn this tragic event, we will remember the selfless and intense dedication they brought to making a difference in the lives of our patients,” said John Noseworthy, Mayo Clinic president and chief executive officer. “We recognize the commitment transplant teams make every day in helping patients at Mayo Clinic and beyond. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families.”
Mayo is working internally to support the family and employees of those lost in this unfortunate tragedy.
The helicopter was owned and operated by an outside company.
All “Helicopter Crash” Stories published by Mayo Clinic
Hi-Res photo of Dr. Luis Bonilla: http://db.tt/BEf78aHF (JPG)
Hi-Res photo of David Hines: http://db.tt/RkWDunq6 (JPG)
Hi-Res photo of Bonilla/Hines together: http://db.tt/eXIqamoM (JPG)
Transplant programs at Mayo Clinic: MayoClinic.org/transplant
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