Look in the skies above Grand Junction. If it's a helicopter you see, it's most likely Grand Junction's CareFlight crew heading to St. Mary's Hospital, saving yet another life.

Courtesy Photo

The EuroCopter AS 350 A Star helicopter cost the hospital $2.5 million and added $250,000 in upgrades to make the craft safer to operate including helmets with night vision goggles.

The craft can cover up to 350 miles and travels at a top speed of 140 mph.

Training is essential, and the crews work tirelessly to make each rescue as smooth as possible.

In addition to the helicopter, they also have a Beechcraft Twin Air 200 turboprop which can hold two patients and up to four staff members in case a critically ill patient has to be transferred to another hospital. It has a cruising altitude of 31,000 feet and travels up to 400 mph.

There is, of course, a highly trained and dedicated ground crew to assist these vehicles and the patients they carry.

In service since 1976, CareFlight has saved countless lives and will continue to do so. We are fortunate to have them.