ANNUAL APPEAL: The Westpac Life Saver Helicopter’s Tom Lee-Lewes and Roger Fry with Tia, Dorian and Lochlan at Coffs Harbour Preschool.
ANNUAL APPEAL: The Westpac Life Saver Helicopter’s Tom Lee-Lewes and Roger Fry with Tia, Dorian and Lochlan at Coffs Harbour Preschool. Bruce Thomas

Helicopter visits children

FLIGHT helmets and goggles have been donned by local youngsters who got a special visit for Helicopter Awareness Week (August 20-27).

Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter pilot crewman Tom Lee-Lewes and aircrew chief Roger Fry led interactive sessions at local preschools, kindergartens and the Coffs Harbour hospital’s children’s ward.

Kids at Coffs Harbour Preschool were delighted by Mr Fry’s box of tricks which allowed them to be part of a makeshift helicopter.

The schools tour was part of Helicopter Awareness Week which coincides with the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter’s annual appeal.

Chief pilot Lynton Beggs said although the service was free, saving lives came at a cost.

“The average cost to perform one mission is $8500 and it costs $30,000 to train a new crew member,” Mr Beggs said.

On Saturday, volunteers will converge on shopping centres to take collections.

It’s hoped that $150,000 will be raised in the rescue helicopter’s biggest fundraising campaign which is now in full swing.

All donations will help keep this vital community service in the sky.

For more information head to http://www.helirescue.com.au/.



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