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A Strong Patient

Justin Honaker - Lesotho flowersThe patient doesn’t make a sound as a nurse and I position her on the floor of a Cessna 206. I am amazed at her resolve not to demonstrate any pain—not even the slightest wince.

Her name is Maleboheng; she is 81 years of age and has a broken femur. Earlier in the day she was in a bus that crashed while negotiating Lesotho’s treacherous mountain roads. MAF was called to transport seven of the most critical patients to a better-equipped facility. Maleboheng was the last of the seven, considered one of the most stable of the group.

I am astonished how well she is handling the pain, though I can see that it is intense as I fasten the last of the straps that will hold her to the floor of the aircraft. The first two planes responding to this accident used our four stretchers we keep at the ready. I have to strap Maleboheng to the floor using a specialized nylon strap specifically designed for such cases.

It is very functional and quite secure, but at the cost of comfort. It’s not my favorite to install, especially with her in so much pain, but I need to keep her safe for the 40-minute flight.

Maleboheng gives me a nod, assuring me that she is okay and ready for departure. Our flight together is short but I am so thankful I can help, even if I make her uncomfortable for a little while in order to get her to the help she needs.


These flights took place in December. Please join us in praying for the healing of Maleboheng and the others involved in the crash.


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