Check out more photos from the event here.
The memorial is headed outside now, where there is supposed to be a helicopter flyover. That will do it for our live coverage, but we’ll have a full story up later today.
Now another slideshow is going, set to a version of Josh Groban’s “You Raise Me Up.”
Danielle Jackson, a first responder in Kake, tells a quick but powerful story about Morse.
“I’m just the ambulance driver,” Jackson said to Morse during one call.
“Honey, you’re not just anything,” Morse responded.
Joel Jackson and other representatives from Kake are now on stage. Jackson says he remembers seeing this crew many times, and says the last time he saw Stacie, she was sharing the news that she was pregnant. He also says the school in Kake had its children make drawings in the time following the crash, to help them process the tragedy. Those drawings were then given to Guardian or the families, it sounds like.
Uniformed personnel, just presented family members with a flag.
Then an audio clip is played, a flight dispatch that’s been made specifically for this service.
It says, in part:
“Crew, you have completed your service here. Now it’s time to rest. All units break for a moment of silence.”
That’s followed by a moment of silence, one where you can hear people around the auditorium softly sobbing.
Then the dispatch says:
“Pat, Margaret, Stacie and Delta Rae…may you rest in peace knowing your strength lives on. Thank you for your commitment, service and ultimate sacrifice…you are cleared to ascend. Only blue skies and tail winds ahead for you. Godspeed and high flight. We’ll carry you with us from here. Dispatch clear.”
Oleksa makes the point that to be a real, genuine human being, a person must be willing to be selfless. They must learn to sacrifice something for others and who care more for others than themselves.
“We’re honoring three real human beings today,” Oleksa says, adding that this ceremony is also honoring first responders in all fields.
Father Michael Oleksa, an elder for the Alaska Federation of Natives, is now telling origin stories about Alaska.
Valerie Cassidy, a flight nurse for Guardian, talks about Morse, saying her smile was infectious and her work ethic was never-ending. She says Morse would have made a great mother.
“The world is a better place for having had Pat, Margaret and Stacie in it,” Cassidy says, “and there will be a hole unfilled.”
Leslie, a flight nurse for Guardian, says Langston had an incredible ability to melt people’s hearts and make an instant connection.
“In the short time that I got to know her, Margaret left an indelible imprint on my heart,” Leslie says.
Ben Wagner, a team member for Guardian, is now speaking about Margaret Langston.
Wagner says the outpouring of support from the community has been “nothing short of incredible.”
“On behalf of the Juneau base, we all thank you very much,” Wagner says.
Magnusson says Coyle used to make banana bread and would try to get it to people as fast as possible so they could get it hot out of the oven.
Eric Magnusson, a captain for Guardian, is speaking about Patrick Coyle.
“If you were blessed to spend even a minute with Pat, you’d feel like you knew him,” Magnusson says.
He then reads a funny bio of Coyle’s on an online travel site, one that begins, “I was born at a very young age.” There are sniffles around the room, but some of the lines in that bio crack people up.
Here’s a photo of Magnusson speaking:
Joshua Radin’s “Worlds Apart” plays as a slideshow of photographs is shown. That song is embedded below, with lyrics in the video.
Apparently Gov. Mike Dunleavy was scheduled to speak, but he wasn’t able to make it. Randy Lyman, the COO of REACH/Guardian Flight, reads a nice letter from the governor instead.
Those in attendance include Rep. Andi Story and Juneau Police Chief Ed Mercer.
We’re in attendance at the memorial ceremony for the victims of the Jan. 29 Guardian Flight crash. Dozens of family members are expected to be in attendance, as well as various first responders and people in the medevac community.
The approximately 80-minute ceremony will honor pilot Patrick Coyle, flight nurse Stacie Rae Morse and flight paramedic Margaret Langston. Morse was pregnant with a child she planned to name Delta Rae.
Read more about the memorial here.