Heading Home

17 October 2011

Pilot Justin Honaker was heading back to Methaleneng, Lesotho, with a full load of passengers. As he was closing the rear cargo door, a vaguely familiar face grinned back at him, asking if Justin remembered him and his 10-year-old son.

When I first met Motlatsi,’ says Justin, ‘he was lethargic, incoherent, and barely conscious, his head having been hit by a stone the day before. I remember buckling his nearly limp body into the back seat of the Cessna 206 – the boy’s eyes darting aimlessly about the cabin – and not reserving much hope for him.

I was caught off guard by the question: “Do you remember us?” For one, we fly a lot of patients, and regrettably I don’t remember them all. And two, next to Theboho, Motlatsi’s father, sat a bright-eyed boy, grinning up at me from the same back seat of the Cessna 206, with the same maroon beanie that had covered his badly injured head.

He was nothing at all like the child I remembered – yet here he was, happy, coherent and excited to be heading home.’ What Justin refers to as ‘a little snapshot of God’s glory’ is an encouraging story among the countless medical emergencies undertaken by MAF pilots worldwide.


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