It took great courage on the part of Ards woman Mary McDonnell to describe the day that she thought she had killed her teenage daughter in a road accident. Ellie crashed her quad bike into her mum's vehicle on a corner, causing catastrophic injuries which doctors were unsure she would survive, never mind recover from.
There is no doubt that the speedy medical attention she received from the crew of the NI Air Ambulance, who also took her to hospital, helped save her life.
The service can reach any part of the province in around 25 minutes, but costs £5,500 a day to keep operational. It has proved its worth in 1,100 cases and is an invaluable resource.