By Governor Martin O'Malley
On Sunday morning, many of us awoke to the tragic news that a State Police medevac helicopter had crashed in Prince George's County, killing four individuals on board. On behalf of all Marylanders, Lieutenant Governor Brown and I extend our heartfelt condolences to the families, friends, and colleagues of State Police Pilot Steven Bunker, Trooper First Class Micky Lippy, EMT Tanya Mallard, and Ashley Younger, who perished in this devastating crash.
Maryland's flags are flying at half staff today in their honor. We ask that each Marylander find a few moments to offer a prayer in their memory, and for the quick recovery of Ms. Jordan Wells, who remains in critical but stable condition at Prince George's Hospital Center.
The sacrifice of those who perished is a tragic and sobering reminder that even when most of us are asleep, our first responders are still protecting us, regardless of conditions, risking their lives to help others. While the State Police work diligently with federal authorities to uncover the details of what occurred Sunday morning, our ultimate goal remains to determine what caused the crash and this tragic loss of life.
Since 1970, when the State Police medevac program was created, more than 120,000 patients have been transported by air, reaching the medical care they require in an amount of time not possible by ground transport. This internationally recognized program has multi-mission capability including medical, rescue, law enforcement, and homeland security. In the shadow of this terrible crash, we remain committed to providing the tools and resources the State Police need to continue protecting the lives of our citizens.