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Public memorial held in Reno for victims of REMSA Care Flight crash

Three coffins draped with the American flag. Six members of the Integrated EMS Honor Guard stand next to them.
David Calvert
REMSA Health
Members of the Integrated EMS Honor Guard inside the Reno-Sparks Convention Center on Wednesday, March 8, 2023 in Reno, Nev. during a memorial service for those who lost their lives on Feb. 24, 2023.

A public memorial service was held on March 8 to remember the victims of the Care Flight plane crash.

A public memorial service was held on March 8 to remember the victims of the Care Flight plane crash.

On February 24, Care Flight 56 received its last call. The plane crashed near Stagecoach, taking the lives of all five passengers. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the cause of the crash.

Care Flight-REMSA Health leadership, staff, family members, the community, first responder agencies and healthcare partners gathered at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center to pay their respects to Care Flight crew members Ed Pricola and Ryan Watson, and Captain Scott Walton.

Care Flight presented Watson, Pricola, and Walton with their wings during the memorial. For Emergency medical services (EMS) professionals, earning wings is described as the culmination of many years of hard work.

The family of the patient and his spouse did not participate in the memorial and requested that their privacy be respected.

“The incredible EMS and healthcare community across Northern Nevada has come together since day one of this tragedy, and that showed up today in the way that we were able to honor the lives we lost. I want to thank our healthcare partners for their operational and emotional support. Our team and families have felt the collective hands on their backs,” said Barry Duplantis, REMSA Health president and CEO.

At the end of the memorial service, a final dispatch call was made in tribute to the crew.

“Care Flight 56 Dispatch. There is no answer for Care Flight 56…This is the final call… You served the community well and now it is time to rest. Thank you for your dedication, your service and your sacrifice. You will never be forgotten…”

Maria joined KUNR Public Radio in December 2022 as a staff reporter. She is interested in stories about underserved communities, immigration, arts and culture, entertainment, education and health.
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