Aeromedicos of Santa Barbara
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Volunteer Medical and Dental Missions to Mexico

June 2006


A hectic last minute plane shuffle resulted in a new pilot, Dale Smith, flying down his A-36. John Grube, with 170 trips' experience, was in the right seat. Thanks, Dale, for pitching in at the last minute. The weather was hot and humid with scattered showers around San Felipe.


Both medical and dental clinics were very lightly attended due to the Mexican soccer team playing Argentina at the same time of the clinic, and a fiesta and political rally for the elections in an adjacent village.

Those patients that did attend were mostly ones with ongoing medical problems. Eric McFarland MD made a patient consultation call to Bob Gayou MD via computer on our solar satellite connection.

In the dental clinic teeth cleanings were very thoroughly done by Lisa Beck, a service that is greatly needed and appreciated. Fillings and extractions were completed by the rest of the team.


Pilots: Craig Arcuri, Larry Cochran, Dale Smith, Ted Kenney MD: Eric McFarland
Family Nurse Practitioner: Myra Cochran RN: Bobbie Bliss
EMT: Nick Abbot Pharmacy: Margo Kenney Helper: Elizabeth Erhart
INTERPRETERS: Susan Grube, Armando Hernandez DENTIST: John Grube
RDA: Tiara Lopez, Melodi Willis RDH: Lisa Beck


Next trip will be Oct 13. The pre trip Barbeque and season kick off will be Sept 30, at the ranch of Robin and Nancy… more info will follow.

October volunteers, call Melodi at (805) 736-7123.


Trip dates 2006 - Oct 13, Nov 10, Dec 8
2007 - Jan 12, Feb 9, Mar 9, April 13, May 11, Jun 8


The following is an update on Eustaquio’s son, Angel. Aeromedicos, via Congresswoman Lois Capps’ office, was able to get a humanitarian visa and provide transportation, thanks to a donation by Brian and Chari Coryat.

Angel Aguilar was injured in a construction accident May 26. He experienced major trauma to the left side of his face and forehead from a piece of rebar. He also lost his left eye. Angel was in need of highly specialized medical care. Dr. Morton of Eye Care of San Diego heard about the story and without hesitation wanted to help Angel by donating his surgical expertise. Angel was also accepted into a program called Freshstart.

Freshstart is a nonprofit organization that helps people who don’t have or qualify for insurance that are in need of reconstructive surgery. It is estimated that Angel will receive in excess of $40,000 in surgeries for free.

The obstacle was to get Angel to the U.S. on a visa so this could all happen. Dr. Grube, of Aeromedicos in Santa Barbara, went through his congressperson and got visas for both Angel and his wife Yadira in less than 2 weeks. Dr. Grube also sent a plane down to Mulege to pick up Angel and Yadira to bring them here, free of charge.

Angel received his first surgery on June 10. He was scheduled for a 1 1/2 hour surgery. Five hours later 2 doctors and a team of 20 were finished. The damage to Angel and the complexity of the surgery was severe. Dr. Morton, along with Dr. Ling, basically rebuilt the left side of Angel’s face. They had to graft muscle from Angel and rebuild his eye socket. They screwed together some loose bones under his eyebrow. His cheekbone was completely shattered, so Dr. Morton rebuilt the bone structure to form a new cheek and did a cheek lift. Both of Angel's eye lids were severed. They did plastic surgery on them so he will have normal looking eye lids that operate correctly. Finally, they put a conformer in his eye socket. This looks like a prosthetic eye. This will be in temporarily until Gordon Kolberg builds his new eye for him. Angel has at least a couple more surgeries to go before he returns to San Juanico, Baja Sur. Thank you to everyone who helped make this happen.

There is a website,, for more information.

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