What goes around…

Mid­dle­ton man in charge of he­li­pad con­struc­tion air­lifted from site 18 years later


When 81- year- old Ron Brown was fight­ing for his life aboard a LifeF­light he­li­copter in the wee hours of Sept. 15, all he could think about was the time Mid­dle­ton Po­lice Chief Ken Cook made a pre­sen­ta­tion to the Lions Club ask­ing if they would help build a he­li­pad at Sol­diers Memo­rial Hos­pi­tal.

All the ser­vice clubs in the area were will­ing to help, but it was the Lions who led the project and Brown was the guy in charge with lo­cal sur­veyor Derik DeWolfe, the even­tual on- site su­per­vi­sor.

“Pretty soon the doc­tor came out and said, ‘you’re go­ing to Hal­i­fax and you’re go­ing to fly.’”

— Ron Brown

Po­lice, fire, EHS, and the lo­cal MLA’s of­fice had formed a com­mit­tee and went out to lo­cal ser­vice groups. The Lions put Brown’s name for­ward and he be­came chair­man of the com­mit­tee to build the he­li­pad.

“We looked at it at the time as a two- hour trip to Hal­i­fax by am­bu­lance as op­posed to 26 min­utes in the air,” said Brown. “That was quite a sell­ing fea­ture.”

Heart at­tack

The com­mu­nity jumped in with both feet, sav­ing many lives over the years – in­clud­ing Brown’s.

“On Septem­ber the 15th of 2018 I had a heart at­tack and called 911 and the am­bu­lance came here, did some work on me, picked me up and took me to the Sol­diers Memo­rial Hos­pi­tal,” Brown said dur­ing an in­ter­view at his home. “And pretty soon the doc­tor came out and said, ‘ you’re go­ing to Hal­i­fax and you’re go­ing to fly.’ So I got to use my he­li­copter pad.”


Ron Brown holds pho­tos of a he­li­copter on the he­li­pad at Sol­diers Memo­rial Hos­pi­tal in Mid­dle­ton. The pho­tos were part of a pack­age dur­ing the of­fi­cial open­ing of the he­li­pad on Oct. 22, 2000. Brown was in charge of build­ing the pad and 18 years later it saved his life.

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