November 2016 Trip Report

I was the Saturday morning airplane this trip and my passengers were four providers who could not get away on Friday.   It all worked pretty well and we were the second plane into Lopez.  It is certainly doable, but I don't recommend it for those who are not early risers!  It was based on a 4:45 arrival at my house for a 5:15 departure and we held our timetable. Guaymas cooperated by giving us a really fast turn and it helped that I was able to ferry sufficient fuel from Stellar to not require any at Guaymas.

We had considered an LSI clinic in addition to Lopez Mateos, but the provider and airplane logistics just didn’t work out.  Lopez Mateos was one of the busiest clinics I can recall and was a great success.  Check this link to Alecia’s blog for a detailed description . In her writings this month you’ll find a discussion on how and why we got to our current practice of patient priority; that is, each clinic being a fresh start and avoiding carryovers from the previous clinic.

Some also became television celebrities.  I missed part of this because I was not in Mulege Friday night.  I ask Joe Patterson, who made the arrangements, to write something of the experience.

Joe wrote:

Joaquin Fragozzo, a Television producer and longtime friend of the Sams, joined us for the November trip.  He produces a television show for channel 3 in Puerto Penasco, and used the trip to prepare a special presentation that will air in the near future.  He and his cameraman, Jorge Martinez, accumulated lots of video footage from Sams members and interviews with people whose lives we affect.  One highlight of his visit was a live broadcast from the lobby of the Hotel Serenidad featuring interviews with Gail Brown and Don Johnson.  He will send us a copy of the presentation as soon as editing and composition is complete.

Occasionally we have mechanical challenges with our aircraft and on this trip, it was my turn.  I detected excess vibration when we left Mulege for home on Sunday morning and returned for a precautionary landing.  I was the last Sam out that morning, but our Aeromedico friends were still there and they helped me with some evaluation.  I reached Joe Patterson before he left Guaymas and with Dave Reynolds help he was able to provide alternate transportation for his passengers.  He then generously returned to Mulege.  I determined I could safely bring N11TJ home with a lightened passenger load and Joe enabled this by carrying three of my four passengers.  It made for a long day, but we all got back to Stellar by late afternoon.  Just another of many examples of the way this chapter works so well together toward our common goal.

Our next clinic will be December 16-18 and we are hoping for both LSI and Lopez Mateos.  This trip will also feature Santa’s annual visit to the children of Hotel Serenidad employees.  Hope to see you soon and I wish you all a joyous holiday season.


Dennis Gerlach
President Phoenix Chapter
Flying Samaritans Arizona