Postings 201-250: Tribute to the Med Flight Crew

On May 10, 2008, a UW Hospital and Clinics Med Flight helicopter crashed near the La Crosse airport after transporting a patient to a La Crosse hospital. On board were emergency medicine physician Darren Bean, MD, flight nurse Mark Coyne, RN, and pilot Steve Lipperer.

Darren, Mark and Steve represented the very best in compassionate patient care and they will be deeply missed by all members of the UW Health family who knew and respected this courageous and committed Med Flight crew.

The condolences and personal memories in these pages were submitted from May 11-June 20. Thank you to those who have shared your support for the UW Health community and the family and friends of the dedicated Med Flight crew members killed in the crash.
 
Darren Bean, MD

Darren Bean, MD

 

Mark Coyne, RN

Mark Coyne, RN

 

Steve Lipperer, Med Flight pilot

Steve Lipperer, pilot

Tribute Message Board
 
Submitted by: Dr. Madhurima Adulla, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
I knew Darren as a soft spoken, compassionate, meticulous and professional colleague. It is with a heavy heart that I noted his sudden and untimely demise. This is a huge loss to the medical fraternity. The crew of Med Flight will always be in our thoughts and prayers.
 
 
Submitted by: Jane Barnett, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
All of the staff at University Health Care, Inc. (Regional Development, Contracting, Regional Decision Support and Data Management) wish to express our deepest sympathy to the staff, families and friends of Darren, Mark and Steve. We hold the Med Flight program and all of its team members in the highest regard. You are our heroes! Our thoughts and prayers go out to each and every one of you. May you find comfort in the expressions of love and support from so many. Take care of each other.
 
 
Submitted by: Marci Moungey, colleague
05/12/2008
 
As a former dispatcher and MedCom operator, I can appreciate the depth of this tragedy. My heart goes out to everyone touched by this. Please know that there are a lot of people who have all of you in their thoughts and prayers. My deepest sympathy.
 
 
Submitted by: Becky
05/12/2008
 
My deepest sympathy to all who are grieving.
 
 
Submitted by: Brenda, colleague
05/12/2008
 
Med Flight has always been in my life. When I was young my mom was very ill and in the UW Hospital a lot. We always ended up at the end of the hallway where we could look down and see the helicopter land and take off. These times made the hospital not seem so bad. Now as an adult I am an EMT and rely on the crew and services of Med Flight when I have a patient that needs a higher level of care that I can give. I always breathe a sigh of relief when the helicopter lands and I see the RN and MD coming toward me to care for my patient. I also work with Dr. Bean in the emergency room at UW. Dr. Bean always knew who you were and would take the time to say hi and talk. These three men are held in high regard in our communities, they put their family and their lives on the line to help our family and friends in their time of need. I am deeply saddened by the loss of these great men, and their family, friends, and colleagues will be in my thoughts and prayers in the coming days and weeks.
 
 
Submitted by: Amanda Hanson, RN
05/12/2008
 
Thank you for the dedication you provide every day. We forget that we all risk our lives sometimes for the sake of others. My prayers are with the family members and those left behind.
 
 
Submitted by: Terry Wise, colleague and friend
05/12/2008
 
A respectful thought and a silent prayer for all three of these dedicated emergency health care providers. All who knew them will miss them, and have a wealth of knowledge as a result of their desire to pass on the important things necessary for us to preserve life. It is with great sadness that this is written for a specific friend, mentor and colleague, Mark. Dr. Bean was a friend of short duration, but a deeply respected professional and a wonderful person.
 
 
Submitted by: Rhonda Sylvester
05/12/2008
 
My heart and prayers go out to the family and friends of the three great men lost in this tragic accident. Mark Coyne was a great and passionate soul and it was my privilege to have known him and to have been taught by him. Thanks for all the great stories Mark!
- Rhonda Sylvester, EMT
Sauk Prairie Ambulance
 
 
Submitted by: Connie
05/12/2008
 
Your staff and family are continuously in my thoughts. I have come in contact with your staff professionally through my practice as a critical care nurse, and personally as a Med Flight team responded to the scene of an accident involving my brother. They were not only extremely professional but compassionate as well. Please know your loss is felt by many.
 
 
Submitted by: Christopher Leopold, student and friend
05/12/2008
 
Mark, you have taught hundreds, if not thousands of students. We have learned so much from you and you have left us with so many patients to care for... "typical Norwegian." My deepest sympathy to your family, friends, and co-workers. Thank you for the education, laughs, and smiles. You made the classes fun with your wisdom and jokes. You will be greatly missed among the EMS community. Keep searching for the ultimate Fly-in Breakfast and save room for me. Ole.
 
 
Submitted by: Sharon Younkin
05/12/2008
 
Our mentoring program toured the Med Flight program this semester and so enjoyed meeting the crew and learning about the amazing work you all perform. Your kindness and patience in answering questions was so appreciated. We are extremely saddened at the loss of these incredible people and hope that knowing how many lives were enriched by their efforts and the efforts of the entire team will provide some comfort to the colleagues, friends and families of your lost crew members.
 
 
Submitted by: Amanda Hanson, RN
05/12/2008
 
Thank you for the dedication you provide every day. We forget that we all risk our lives sometimes for the sake of others. My prayers are with the family members of those left behind.
 
 
Submitted by: Scott Oswalt
05/12/2008
 
It is always tough to hear news such as this. In today's world we spend much of our time reading, and listening to, one sad story after another in the news. We get so used to hearing about another senseless and horrific crime over and over and over. One more bad person hurts an innocent and good person, and someone has to be called in to do their best to save the injured one. Yet we all tend to push it behind us and move on. But something tells me I just can't let this one go without saying something. This really hits home with me, since doctors in the Kansas City area worked very hard to save both of my Grandfathers after massive heart attacks. Both of my Grandfathers are still alive and well, and remain active and healthy to this day, due to the pride and hard work of their respective doctors. I just wanted to take a moment to let someone know that the hard work of these three individuals will never be forgotten. For everything they accomplished in the health field, they will always be held in high regard and deeply appreciated forever. It's never fair when people who were put on this earth to save lives are taken from us way too early in life. These folks were dedicated to spending their lives helping others. And did so without making judgments about their patients' character. Their lives were engineered toward improving medical science. Basically in my mind, they were heroes. Not the kind we see on television or on the big screen. But real life super-heroes. People who did everything in their power to be there for someone in need. My thoughts and prayers go out to all their family, friends, and colleagues. May their wonderful deeds and dedication be heralded and remembered always. And in the end, just a simple thank you. Thank you for the mark you've left on this earth. For the time you were able to give us, you were great.
 
 
Submitted by: Anastasia K.
05/12/2008
 
I have never met any of these three wonderful people, but from what I have read they were not only remarkable and dedicated, but loved and cherished by so many. I send my deepest condolences to all those whose lives have been touched by Darren, Mark and Steve. Peace be with their families. "Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal." - Irish Proverb
 
 
Submittedy by: Riverside Family Practice
05/12/2008
 
We send our sincere sympathies and honors to the Med Flight Crew and their families. We know how important Med Flight is to a small community like Muscoda. In addition many members of my family (Dawn) have been transported via Med Flight. This is truly a sad time for all of Wisconsin.
- Dawn, CMA; Leanne, LPN; Gert Hasselhof, MD
Riverside Family Practice
 
 
Submitted by: Lynn Fischer, colleague
05/12/2008
 
There are no words to convey the sadness - my thoughts and prayers are with you all.
 
 
Submitted by: Name not provided
05/12/2008
 
This tragic event will never be forgotten to anyone. I personally have always had a special care in my heart for the Med Flight crew, for if it wasn't for them a very special little boy to me probably would not be here with us. I just always wanted to thank them for dedicating their lives to help save others. We will miss these men and they will always be in our hearts. Thank you for everything and rest in peace.
 
 
Submitted by: Melanie
05/12/2008
 
I am very sorry to hear about this. I give my best to their family members.
 
 
Submitted by: Toby Campbell, MD, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
This tragedy touches all in our small community - none deeper than the family and friends of Darren, Mark, and Steve. I think of the pride the team has in their work, the emblematic blue jumpsuit, the joy of flying and saving lives, the selflessness... My thoughts and prayers are with you.
 
 
Submitted by: Peggy
05/12/2008
 
I have had a few chances to work with Dr. Bean on flight calls with our EMS service. His dedication, kindness and concern for the patients and our volunteers was tremendous. Mark was one of my instructors who taught me more that just the skills needed to do my job. The 3 crew members will be missed dearly by many. Their family and friends will be in our thoughts and prayers. I know that Med Flight will move on and continue to provide such an excellent service. Sadly missed by the Lake Mills EMS.
- Peggy
Lake Mills EMS
 
 
Submitted by: Sutra Ginder
05/12/2008
 
Hi, I just want to pass my deepest condolence for the terrible accident and the painful loss of the Med Flight Crew. May they all rest in peace, and their families would find strength and patience in this difficult time. Although it's tragic, they all are heroes. I felt fortunate to have a chance to meet Dr. Bean when I was in a treatment at UW Emergency. His respectful manner, sincerity, and friendliness would never be forgotten by all of us. Sincerely, Sutra
 
 
Submitted by: Patti
05/12/2008
 
As a nurse I know that your crew would have done anything to help a person in need. We mourn with you at the loss of your family and friends but appreciate their dedication and willingness to help out. They will not be forgotten.
 
 
Submitted by: Robert Berry, friend
05/12/2008
 
To the family of Dr. Darren Bean: The entire community here in Park City, Utah are in shock and our deepest sympathy goes out to the family. My thoughts and prayers our with you at this extremely difficult time. As a friend and retired Sheriff Detective I personally know what an extremely important part these emergency people's roles are in times of need and I understand their dedication to their jobs in spite of the risks they have to make putting themselves before all others. They will not be forgotten, but remembered by all of us. Especially the patients that owe their lives to these people who have given the greatest sacrifice of all - their own lives. In deepest respects,
- Rob
Park City, Utah
 
 
Submitted by: Mike Carlin, colleague
05/12/2008
 
Thoughts and prayers to the families and friends of Dr. Bean, Mark, and Steve. Having worked with Dr. Bean in and out of UW ED and his work with Dane County and MFD Paramedics, his legacy will live on through our work.
- Mike Carlin, EMT-P
Sun Prairie EMS
 
 
Submitted by: Mary
05/12/2008
 
My heart is heavy indeed as I struggle to comprehend this profound tragedy. To have their own lives cut short after safely and compassionately helping to save another's is incomprehensible. My deepest condolences to the families of these heroes.
 
 
Submitted by: Brian Allen
05/12/2008
 
Deepest heartfelt sympathies to all the families and relatives of the Med Flight crew (Darren, Mark and Steve).
 
 
Submitted by: Lisa Rogers, colleague
05/12/2008
 
My thoughts and prayers go out to these kind, caring individuals. Many lives have been touched by them, may they rest in peace.
 
 
Submitted by: Camille
05/12/2008
 
Very sorry to hear about the loss of your Med Flight colleagues. Condolences to their families and your community.
- Camille
University of Michigan Medical School staff member
 
 
Submitted by: Sandi, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
As a colleague of UW and EAA - the aviation industry will sincerely miss Steve Lipperer, a fellow member in the aviation industry - along with fellow colleagues at UW, our family was allowed by Dr. Darren Bean to have our son shadow in the ER as a pre-med student. Mark Coyne, RN, was at the top of his league as a flight nurse. We certainly were blessed to have this Med Flight team at UW and certainly believe that this team will be with us in many years to follow looking down upon us every day while we carry on. We all will miss you Dr. Darren Bean, Mark Coyne, RN, and Steve Lipperer, pilot. Peace be with you.
 
 
Submitted by: Jaime McCord, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
While I didn't have the pleasure to know Mark or Steve personally (but from reading all the messages I have no doubt they were stellar individuals), I know what a wonderful teacher and physician Darren Bean was and his absence will truly leave a hole in some ways in the education we as surgery/trauma residents received when working with him in the ER and trauma bay. He was enthusiastic, patient, and dedicated to us as residents. I know I am one of many future surgeons at UW who was definitely impacted by Darren and mourn the loss of a great colleague and teacher. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of their families.
 
 
Submitted by: Doug Dulli, MD, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
This loss is such a tragedy, and a huge loss to our hospital. It was a privilege to work personally with Darren through our acute stroke service, and I will miss him greatly.
 
 
Submitted by: Devon Christenson, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
I've known Mark Coyne for about 20 years. He always had a joke or two or three, that he readily shared. He was full of energy and fun, and always willing to do whatever he could to help others. His passion for excellence in nursing was always apparent. It seemed that Mark knew how to live each moment of life to its fullest. I'll miss him, as will the MANY people who had their lives touched by him. Words can't express the deep sadness that I feel for Ann and the rest of Mark's family. He leaves behind a gift of happy memories for those of us who knew him.
 
 
Submitted by: Teresa Helseth, RN, hospice and home care
05/12/2008
 
My sympathies to all of you as you grieve - family, friends and co-workers. We lost one of our nurses a couple of years ago and it reminded us how fragile life really is. Our prayers are with all of you at this sad time.
 
 
Submitted by: James Stein, MD, UW Health colleague and friend
05/12/2008
 
These men are heroes who saved lives every day, not just by transporting and caring for critically ill patients, but by teaching and improving our delivery of health care across Dane County and the State of Wisconsin. I have tremendous love and respect for them, and hope their family and friends will accept my most sincere and deepest condolences.
 
 
Submitted by: Diana Moran-Kayser, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
As an employee of UWHC I just want you to know that my heart aches for you, my prayers are lifted for your families.
 
 
Submitted by: Jody, colleague
05/12/2008
 
My prayers go out to the friends and families of all three men. They will be missed.
 
 
Submitted by: Pete, colleague
05/12/2008
 
There was so much excitement and enthusiasm for Darren's work as our new medical director, all of us at MFD cannot fully fathom how much we have lost. Dr. Bean challenged us, and became our friend in his short tenure with us. Mark has touched countless lives through his teaching and work, and will be missed greatly. God speed Darren, Mark and Steve!
- Pete
Madison Fire Department Paramedic/Lieutenant
 
 
Submitted by: Cindie
05/12/2008
 
Our thoughts and prayers are with your families. Thank you for all the dedicated work you do.
 
 
Submitted by: Denise Reimer
05/12/2008
 
My thoughts and prayers are with all the family and friends mourning the loss of these giving, caring men. They are heroes who risked their lives to save others and will be mourned by many.
 
 
Submitted by: Janet Ramsey, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
I remember back to the time when Mark found out he would be a Med Flight nurse and how excited he was. He was telling everyone on the unit and everyone who came to the unit. I always thought Mark was a cowboy who came here to help. His quick wit and calmness in situations made everyone who worked with him at ease. He will be missed by all who knew him.
 
 
Submitted by: William Ehlenbach, MD, colleague
05/12/2008
 
As a graduate of the UW Internal Medicine residency program, I had the pleasure of working with and learning from Darren Bean on countless occasions. His dedication to excellent patient care and his boundless enthusiasm for teaching will not be forgotten. This tragic loss of three dedicated professionals is being felt not only in Wisconsin, but around the country.
- Bill Ehlenbach, MD
University of Washington
 
 
Submitted by: Sherri
05/12/2008
 
Our thoughts are with the families and co-workers of the Med Flight team. We know how important their jobs are for our communities. It takes very special people to do what they did. I'm sure they were very passionate about taking care of all their patients. God Bless!
 
 
Submitted by: Martha
05/12/2008
 
Our thoughts and prayers are with UW and all those who knew and loved these men.
 
 
Submitted by: Heather, colleague
05/12/2008
 
My thoughts and prayers go to the families of these brave men that gave their lives everyday. They truly are heroes that will be remembered forever.
 
 
Submitted by: Crystal, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
I want to give my condolences to these three men who are heroes in my eyes. I'm a current employee at UW Hospital, I was Med Flighted 2 years ago and I know at least one or two of these men saved my life. I want to thank them as well as give my thoughts and prayers to their families!
 
 
Submitted by: Jean Marie, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
Prior to working with Med Flight, Mark Coyne was a nurse in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. He delivered compasionate and professional care to many children and families. It was a joy to work with him. My condolences to all of the families involved in this sad story.
 
 
Submitted by: Julie Noel
05/12/2008
 
I wish to express my sincere condolences to the families of these "heroes." Their bravery and dedication to the patients is reflected in the Med Flight work they did. I hope the memories of happier days and the joy of having them in their lives will help ease the families' loss.
 
 
Submitted by: Richard Keller, colleague
05/12/2008
 
I was so troubled to hear of this tragic loss. I did not know Dr. Bean personally or professionally, but was his patient in the UW Hospital emergency room several years ago, and was with my nephew when he treated him a year before that. He treated us both with the utmost professionalism, compassion, and good humor. My thoughts are with his and the other victims' families.
 
 
Submitted by: Lakisha Logan, MA float, UW Health colleague
05/12/2008
 
My condolences go out to all of the family and friends of these three very courageous and obviously well loved men. My prayers are with all of you in this time of need.
 
 
Submitted by: Anita Schneider
05/12/2008
 
My deepest sympathy is extended to the families and entire staff at UW Health. The loss of three remarkable people cannot be put into words. Their destiny was to better lives and they were doing what they loved best... saving a life. God Bless their memory as we feel your loss.
 
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