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Complements the local road ambulance services by providing rapid emergency aero-medical transportation of patients who are critically ill or injured.

Eugene Mazimpaka
  • Eugene Mazimpaka

Team member focus ...

“To most people the sky is the limit. To those who love aviation, the sky is home.” Anonymous. Today we introduce you to another team member of the AMS Aircraft Maintenance Organisation (AMO), Eugene Mazimpaka. Eugene hails from a country located a few degrees south of the equator and its geography is dominated by mountains in the west and south, a country with green, mountainous landscape … Rwanda. Here’s a look into his world …

Tell us about yourself: “I was born and raised in Kigali capital city of Rwanda where I also completed all my schooling. My interest in aviation was sparked at a young age. Every day not far from my house helicopters were taking off and landing day and night. I would be watching them through the window of my room some days I would go and stand behind the Airforce Base fence to observe them more closely.”

How long have you been with AMS? “I joined AMS early February 2009. It’s exactly eight years.”

What's the best/worst thing to happen to you since you joined AMS? “Always focusing on the best. They are numerous, it will take me forever to talk about them, briefly it’s a privilege to work for AMS.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “Knowledgeable, hardworking and friendly.”

What do you do in your spare time? “I don’t have much spare time outside of parental duties as I have twins Kelilah and Caleb who always wants me to spend time with them. I attend church regularly other than that we spend weekends on the farm far from town noises and other disturbances.”

What is the one thing about you few people know? “It’s difficult to say. You will be surprised what people know or say about you.”

What is on your bedside table? “Lamp shade, Bible and cell phone.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Thomas Jefferson; Barack Obama; Fidel Castro; King Rudahigwa and Clotilde.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “To thank God for divine protection upon us as family and to travel to work safely and arrive on time.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “When my twins were born.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “To be President or the Minister of Justice.”

The best thing since sliced bread is … “My Family.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Church, Indian cuisine and business.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “Air/water/food - as one.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “I am trying hard to be a bit more patient and a better listener.”

Any wise words you will never forget? “That real opportunity for success lies within the person and not in the job.” Zig Ziglar.

 

Team member focus ...
  • Eugene Mazimpaka

Team member focus ...

“To most people the sky is the limit. To those who love aviation, the sky is home.” Anonymous. Today we introduce you to another team member of the AMS Aircraft Maintenance Organisation (AMO), Eugene Mazimpaka. Eugene hails from a country located a few degrees south of the equator and its geography is dominated by mountains in the west and south, a country with green, mountainous landscape … Rwanda. Here’s a look into his world …

Tell us about yourself: “I was born and raised in Kigali capital city of Rwanda where I also completed all my schooling. My interest in aviation was sparked at a young age. Every day not far from my house helicopters were taking off and landing day and night. I would be watching them through the window of my room some days I would go and stand behind the Airforce Base fence to observe them more closely.”

How long have you been with AMS? “I joined AMS early February 2009. It’s exactly eight years.”

What's the best/worst thing to happen to you since you joined AMS? “Always focusing on the best. They are numerous, it will take me forever to talk about them, briefly it’s a privilege to work for AMS.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “Knowledgeable, hardworking and friendly.”

What do you do in your spare time? “I don’t have much spare time outside of parental duties as I have twins Kelilah and Caleb who always wants me to spend time with them. I attend church regularly other than that we spend weekends on the farm far from town noises and other disturbances.”

What is the one thing about you few people know? “It’s difficult to say. You will be surprised what people know or say about you.”

What is on your bedside table? “Lamp shade, Bible and cell phone.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Thomas Jefferson; Barack Obama; Fidel Castro; King Rudahigwa and Clotilde.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “To thank God for divine protection upon us as family and to travel to work safely and arrive on time.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “When my twins were born.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “To be President or the Minister of Justice.”

The best thing since sliced bread is … “My Family.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Church, Indian cuisine and business.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “Air/water/food - as one.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “I am trying hard to be a bit more patient and a better listener.”

Any wise words you will never forget? “That real opportunity for success lies within the person and not in the job.” Zig Ziglar.

 

Jonathan Groenewald
  • Jonathan Groenewald

Meet our team

Today we travel to South Africa’s oldest City - the Mother City, a beautiful City with a long rich history and undoubtedly South Africa’s main tourist attraction. The AMS in partnership with the Western Cape Department of Health Emergency Medical Services provides and emergency air ambulance and rescue service to the community. We checked in with our team at Cape Town Base situated in the General Aviation Area of Cape Town International Airport. Here’s a look into the life of Jonathan Groenewald one of our Flight Paramedics and External Load Operators (ELO).

Tell us about yourself: “I was born and raised in Cape Town. I attended Rondebosch Boys High where I completed my matric. I then went on to study Marketing at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). Once I completed my Marketing Diploma, I started with my degree in Emergency Care and here I am today. I also have a great appreciation for music and can recite just about any song you give me (pity I wasn’t blessed with a good voice though).”

How long have you been with AMS? “I started with AMS whilst I was still working for the Western Cape Department of Health Emergency Medical Services. We were seconded here for two months. Two months became four months, which became six months, and is now going on four years.”

What's the best/worst thing to happen to you since you joined AMS? “The best…meeting fantastic people, learning loads about aviation and now knowing what the difference between a South Easter and North Wester is (one blows the rain away, one brings the rain in, who knew…) The worst thing to happen since I joined… probably the roster.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “Honest/funny/driven (or I hope it’s that at least).”

What do you do in your spare time? “I enjoy playing bowls (old man’s marbles), listening to and playing music (I’ve played the drums for the last 16 years and currently learning how to play the guitar and enjoy camping in Ceres. I also enjoy watching sport on the weekend and spending time with my Girlfriend (although she will argue I watch way too much sport, but how much is too much really?)”

What is the one thing about you few people know? “I was offered a job at a strip club…… as the DJ. Needless to say I turned it down - much to the dismay of my friends. I also hosted the breakfast show on KFM for a day.”

What is on your bedside table? “A desk lamp, Rosary, minions, phone, an alarm clock radio and other random stuff (I’m a bit of a hoarder).”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be?

“Depends who’s paying. Jimi Hendrix to supply the music. Nelson Mandela to supply the conversation. Gordon Ramsey to supply the food. Oprah because maybe I leave with a car and Trevor Noah to supply the venue have you seen the pics of his latest house purchase? Amazing (oh and for the comic relief of course) but it’s really for his house.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “I have so many when I wake up. If I’m working on the helicopter…. What time is it? Please let it be raining. The wind is 30 knots again. I forgot to charge my phone. Do I have to work today? What’s for lunch? Where did I leave my shoes? What time is it again? If I’m working on the fixed wing…I wonder what time I’m going to George today.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “I don’t think I can pinpoint a specific day. My off-days make me pretty happy.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “Play soccer for Manchester United, DJ in Ibiza.”

The best thing since sliced bread is … “Apparently Albany’s best of both, but I’m not a fan.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Biltong and tea, not necessarily at the same time. Oh, I also love crumbed chicken for some reason.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “My girlfriend (heavy brownie points right there).”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “Biting my nails. My mom used to put that stuff on my nails to stop me biting them. It was so bitter and used to get on my sandwiches at Primary School. Needless to say I became very good at trading lunches.”

Any wise words you will never forget? “I’m only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.”

Meet our team
  • Jonathan Groenewald

Meet our team

Today we travel to South Africa’s oldest City - the Mother City, a beautiful City with a long rich history and undoubtedly South Africa’s main tourist attraction. The AMS in partnership with the Western Cape Department of Health Emergency Medical Services provides and emergency air ambulance and rescue service to the community. We checked in with our team at Cape Town Base situated in the General Aviation Area of Cape Town International Airport. Here’s a look into the life of Jonathan Groenewald one of our Flight Paramedics and External Load Operators (ELO).

Tell us about yourself: “I was born and raised in Cape Town. I attended Rondebosch Boys High where I completed my matric. I then went on to study Marketing at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). Once I completed my Marketing Diploma, I started with my degree in Emergency Care and here I am today. I also have a great appreciation for music and can recite just about any song you give me (pity I wasn’t blessed with a good voice though).”

How long have you been with AMS? “I started with AMS whilst I was still working for the Western Cape Department of Health Emergency Medical Services. We were seconded here for two months. Two months became four months, which became six months, and is now going on four years.”

What's the best/worst thing to happen to you since you joined AMS? “The best…meeting fantastic people, learning loads about aviation and now knowing what the difference between a South Easter and North Wester is (one blows the rain away, one brings the rain in, who knew…) The worst thing to happen since I joined… probably the roster.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “Honest/funny/driven (or I hope it’s that at least).”

What do you do in your spare time? “I enjoy playing bowls (old man’s marbles), listening to and playing music (I’ve played the drums for the last 16 years and currently learning how to play the guitar and enjoy camping in Ceres. I also enjoy watching sport on the weekend and spending time with my Girlfriend (although she will argue I watch way too much sport, but how much is too much really?)”

What is the one thing about you few people know? “I was offered a job at a strip club…… as the DJ. Needless to say I turned it down - much to the dismay of my friends. I also hosted the breakfast show on KFM for a day.”

What is on your bedside table? “A desk lamp, Rosary, minions, phone, an alarm clock radio and other random stuff (I’m a bit of a hoarder).”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be?

“Depends who’s paying. Jimi Hendrix to supply the music. Nelson Mandela to supply the conversation. Gordon Ramsey to supply the food. Oprah because maybe I leave with a car and Trevor Noah to supply the venue have you seen the pics of his latest house purchase? Amazing (oh and for the comic relief of course) but it’s really for his house.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “I have so many when I wake up. If I’m working on the helicopter…. What time is it? Please let it be raining. The wind is 30 knots again. I forgot to charge my phone. Do I have to work today? What’s for lunch? Where did I leave my shoes? What time is it again? If I’m working on the fixed wing…I wonder what time I’m going to George today.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “I don’t think I can pinpoint a specific day. My off-days make me pretty happy.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “Play soccer for Manchester United, DJ in Ibiza.”

The best thing since sliced bread is … “Apparently Albany’s best of both, but I’m not a fan.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Biltong and tea, not necessarily at the same time. Oh, I also love crumbed chicken for some reason.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “My girlfriend (heavy brownie points right there).”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “Biting my nails. My mom used to put that stuff on my nails to stop me biting them. It was so bitter and used to get on my sandwiches at Primary School. Needless to say I became very good at trading lunches.”

Any wise words you will never forget? “I’m only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.”

Nokubonga Krwentela
  • Nokubonga Krwentela

Meet our team

Today our platform of getting to know our team allows us to welcome one of our newest team members, Nokubonga Krwentela. Nokubonga joined the AMS family in the beginning of this year and is based at our King Shaka base. Here’s a look into her world …

Tell us about yourself: “I was born and brought up in King William’s Town in the Eastern Cape. My higher education studies I completed at Durban University of Technology.”

What role do you fulfil within the organisation? “I oversee the air ambulance side of operations in the KwaZulu-Natal region.”

What are you looking forward to, in working at AMS? “Growth and lasting relationships.”

What has been the best/worst thing to happen to you since you joined AMS? “That is a relative question, what one may perceive as the worst, someone else might view it as just an obstacle, challenging their character and may turn out to be the best thing for them, aiding in shaping them in who they are meant to be. To answer your question, the best thing to ever happen to me since I joined AMS is the opportunity to continue to love beyond the hurdles.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “HA! I had step out of the office for a second and actually ‘ask’ that question to my colleagues. Here’s what they had to say: friendly came up a lot, approachable (could easily fit in the friendly bracket?!?), ambitious, confident, and joyful. I know that was more than three words, but I did not want to leave out some opinions.”

What do you do in your spare time? “My English fails me at times, what does that mean again?”

What is the one thing about you few people know? “My parents disowned me in my early twenties for about five years.”

What is on your bedside table? My Bible, a book by Beni Johnson, a speaker and an e-reader.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Nelson Mandela, Michelle Obama, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Maya Angelou and Michael Jackson. Biblical people? Jesus Christ and Esther.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What’s the time? Another 5 minutes? In quick succession, so I cannot make up my mind which thought jumped up first!”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “I don’t actually have one I can pinpoint. I am however happiest when I am home and spending the day with my mother. There is indescribable peace that comes with her presence.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “I had to really think hard on this one…between flying a helicopter (you can blame Kim Watchhurst for that one) and being a racing car driver (legally)….looking after special needs children from rural areas would probably be the first choice.”

The best thing since sliced bread is …Being in His presence.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Coffee, red wine, chocolate, cheese. Did I mention red wine?”

 What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “My Bible and music.” 

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? Being judgmental. Let me explain, I have this tendency of deciding / justifying why someone does or say the things they do. Instead of sticking with the facts and allowing myself to love beyond the stuff they do. I am yet to overcome that battle.”

Any wise words you will never forget? “The person you want nothing to do with because they have hurt you or you think you are better than them because their sin is bigger than yours, did you know that Jesus loves them the exact same way He loves you? Not an inch more and not an inch less…The same. We are not the mistakes we make.”

 

Meet our team
  • Nokubonga Krwentela

Meet our team

Today our platform of getting to know our team allows us to welcome one of our newest team members, Nokubonga Krwentela. Nokubonga joined the AMS family in the beginning of this year and is based at our King Shaka base. Here’s a look into her world …

Tell us about yourself: “I was born and brought up in King William’s Town in the Eastern Cape. My higher education studies I completed at Durban University of Technology.”

What role do you fulfil within the organisation? “I oversee the air ambulance side of operations in the KwaZulu-Natal region.”

What are you looking forward to, in working at AMS? “Growth and lasting relationships.”

What has been the best/worst thing to happen to you since you joined AMS? “That is a relative question, what one may perceive as the worst, someone else might view it as just an obstacle, challenging their character and may turn out to be the best thing for them, aiding in shaping them in who they are meant to be. To answer your question, the best thing to ever happen to me since I joined AMS is the opportunity to continue to love beyond the hurdles.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “HA! I had step out of the office for a second and actually ‘ask’ that question to my colleagues. Here’s what they had to say: friendly came up a lot, approachable (could easily fit in the friendly bracket?!?), ambitious, confident, and joyful. I know that was more than three words, but I did not want to leave out some opinions.”

What do you do in your spare time? “My English fails me at times, what does that mean again?”

What is the one thing about you few people know? “My parents disowned me in my early twenties for about five years.”

What is on your bedside table? My Bible, a book by Beni Johnson, a speaker and an e-reader.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Nelson Mandela, Michelle Obama, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Maya Angelou and Michael Jackson. Biblical people? Jesus Christ and Esther.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What’s the time? Another 5 minutes? In quick succession, so I cannot make up my mind which thought jumped up first!”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “I don’t actually have one I can pinpoint. I am however happiest when I am home and spending the day with my mother. There is indescribable peace that comes with her presence.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “I had to really think hard on this one…between flying a helicopter (you can blame Kim Watchhurst for that one) and being a racing car driver (legally)….looking after special needs children from rural areas would probably be the first choice.”

The best thing since sliced bread is …Being in His presence.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Coffee, red wine, chocolate, cheese. Did I mention red wine?”

 What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “My Bible and music.” 

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? Being judgmental. Let me explain, I have this tendency of deciding / justifying why someone does or say the things they do. Instead of sticking with the facts and allowing myself to love beyond the stuff they do. I am yet to overcome that battle.”

Any wise words you will never forget? “The person you want nothing to do with because they have hurt you or you think you are better than them because their sin is bigger than yours, did you know that Jesus loves them the exact same way He loves you? Not an inch more and not an inch less…The same. We are not the mistakes we make.”

 

AMS cadet programme
  • AMS cadet programme

Meet our team ... Focus on our Cadet Programme

At AMS we believe in investing in the future by developing skilled specialists and making a significant contribution to our industry. The organisation actively pursues programmes that addresses the shortage of skills within the aero-medical field and thus offers programmes such as trade apprenticeships in the engineering field and the Fixed Wing Pilatus PC12 Cadet Development Programme. The programme was established to develop young pilots and in so doing boost the African Aviation industry. Today we met up with Ikageng Ramphomane, also known as Ike to his colleagues. Ike has been with the organisation for two years.

Tell us about yourself? “I was born and bred in Johannesburg and also completed my pilot training in Johannesburg.”

What motivated you to become a pilot? “The love of aeroplanes.”

How has your journey been thus far? “I started my pilot training in Heidelberg, Gauteng in 2009. I did my training part-time while I did the occasional odd job. After some hard work and patience I finally obtained my Commercial Pilot Licence in 2012. I then got accepted into the SAA Cadet Pilot Development Programme. I was sent to Port Alfred in the Eastern Cape to do further training. I graduated from this programme in 2014. In 2015 I began my first flying job with AMS. I was based in Durban for a year and then was transferred to Cape Town, where I am currently based.” 

Which part of the programme do you enjoy the most? “Helping the community. Saving lives, changing lives.”

What is the best/worst thing to happen to you since you started working for AMS? “Working with an amazing group of people every day.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “Relaxed. Calm. Focused”.

What do you do in your spare time? “Sleep.”

What is on your bedside table? “A study lamp.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Kurt Vonnegut, Toni Morrison, Malcolm X, Bob Hoover and Richard Pryor.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What is the time?”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “My first solo flight.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “A professional sportsman.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Music.”

What is the one thing you can’t live without? “Music.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking? “Not praying every day.’ 

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “Never give up.”

Any motto you live by? “Try…”

Meet our team ... Focus on our Cadet Programme
  • AMS cadet programme

Meet our team ... Focus on our Cadet Programme

At AMS we believe in investing in the future by developing skilled specialists and making a significant contribution to our industry. The organisation actively pursues programmes that addresses the shortage of skills within the aero-medical field and thus offers programmes such as trade apprenticeships in the engineering field and the Fixed Wing Pilatus PC12 Cadet Development Programme. The programme was established to develop young pilots and in so doing boost the African Aviation industry. Today we met up with Ikageng Ramphomane, also known as Ike to his colleagues. Ike has been with the organisation for two years.

Tell us about yourself? “I was born and bred in Johannesburg and also completed my pilot training in Johannesburg.”

What motivated you to become a pilot? “The love of aeroplanes.”

How has your journey been thus far? “I started my pilot training in Heidelberg, Gauteng in 2009. I did my training part-time while I did the occasional odd job. After some hard work and patience I finally obtained my Commercial Pilot Licence in 2012. I then got accepted into the SAA Cadet Pilot Development Programme. I was sent to Port Alfred in the Eastern Cape to do further training. I graduated from this programme in 2014. In 2015 I began my first flying job with AMS. I was based in Durban for a year and then was transferred to Cape Town, where I am currently based.” 

Which part of the programme do you enjoy the most? “Helping the community. Saving lives, changing lives.”

What is the best/worst thing to happen to you since you started working for AMS? “Working with an amazing group of people every day.”

What are the three words your colleagues would use to describe you? “Relaxed. Calm. Focused”.

What do you do in your spare time? “Sleep.”

What is on your bedside table? “A study lamp.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Kurt Vonnegut, Toni Morrison, Malcolm X, Bob Hoover and Richard Pryor.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What is the time?”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “My first solo flight.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “A professional sportsman.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Music.”

What is the one thing you can’t live without? “Music.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking? “Not praying every day.’ 

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “Never give up.”

Any motto you live by? “Try…”

AMS engineers
  • AMS engineers

Meet our team ... a visit into our hangars

Aviation is the branch of engineering that is least forgiving of mistakes” Freeman Dyson. The AMS Aircraft Maintenance Organisation (AMO) maintains the AMS aircraft in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) regulations. This team of dedicated individuals ensures that our aircraft are safe, serviceable and flying. Today we take a look inside the AMS hangars… we chatted to Ismail Kabley, one our Aviation Maintenance Engineers who has been with the organisation for nine years. Here’s a look into the life of an engineer with a sense of humour …

Tell us about yourself: “I was born in Cape Town, grew up and completed my formal schooling in Salt River. In 2006 I left Cape Town to join the South African Airways (SAA) apprenticeship programme as an aircraft radiotrician in Gauteng.”

Did you always wanted to be an engineer? Yes I have always been interested in electronics and how things work.”

Were you in any other trade other than aviation before? I was in the retail industry for a while.”

How did your career start in aviation? In1996 when I was selected to become an apprentice with SAA as an aircraft radiotrician.”

What's the best/worst thing to happen to you since you started at AMS? Best thing is working with an awesome team (most times lol).”

What do you do in your spare time? “I spend time with my family and indulge in motor racing.”

What’s the one thing about you few people know? I have a knack for cooking, hairdressing and I love music.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “Getting challenged with problems on the aircraft that baffle other people.”

What is on your bedside table? “My phone and pictures of my family.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Ghandi; Hitler, Heath Ledger, Prince and George Michael.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “Oh dear here we go again.”

What has been the happiest day of your life?The days my sons were born.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “Be the President of South Africa.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Chocolate and women.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “Air.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “I want to stop driving so fast (but that will never happen).”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you?  Be careful on whose toes you step on as you climb the ladder of success as they may be the a.. you have to kiss on your way back down.”

Any motto you live by? Trust your instincts.”

Meet our team ... a visit into our hangars
  • AMS engineers

Meet our team ... a visit into our hangars

Aviation is the branch of engineering that is least forgiving of mistakes” Freeman Dyson. The AMS Aircraft Maintenance Organisation (AMO) maintains the AMS aircraft in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) regulations. This team of dedicated individuals ensures that our aircraft are safe, serviceable and flying. Today we take a look inside the AMS hangars… we chatted to Ismail Kabley, one our Aviation Maintenance Engineers who has been with the organisation for nine years. Here’s a look into the life of an engineer with a sense of humour …

Tell us about yourself: “I was born in Cape Town, grew up and completed my formal schooling in Salt River. In 2006 I left Cape Town to join the South African Airways (SAA) apprenticeship programme as an aircraft radiotrician in Gauteng.”

Did you always wanted to be an engineer? Yes I have always been interested in electronics and how things work.”

Were you in any other trade other than aviation before? I was in the retail industry for a while.”

How did your career start in aviation? In1996 when I was selected to become an apprentice with SAA as an aircraft radiotrician.”

What's the best/worst thing to happen to you since you started at AMS? Best thing is working with an awesome team (most times lol).”

What do you do in your spare time? “I spend time with my family and indulge in motor racing.”

What’s the one thing about you few people know? I have a knack for cooking, hairdressing and I love music.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “Getting challenged with problems on the aircraft that baffle other people.”

What is on your bedside table? “My phone and pictures of my family.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “Ghandi; Hitler, Heath Ledger, Prince and George Michael.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “Oh dear here we go again.”

What has been the happiest day of your life?The days my sons were born.”

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? “Be the President of South Africa.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Chocolate and women.”

What is the one thing, you can’t live without? “Air.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “I want to stop driving so fast (but that will never happen).”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you?  Be careful on whose toes you step on as you climb the ladder of success as they may be the a.. you have to kiss on your way back down.”

Any motto you live by? Trust your instincts.”

stephan rossouw
  • stephan rossouw

Team focus ...

Today our journey of getting to know and introducing our team members takes us to the Ostrich capital of the world – Oudtshoorn, the largest town in the Little Karoo.  The AMS base in Oudtshoorn provides an emergency rescue and air ambulance service to the community. We take a glimpse into the life of one of our rotor wing pilots, Stephan Rossouw who has been with the organisation for eight years. A man with a good heart, a big smile and zest for life is a few words that is very fitting to this captain! Here’s what he had to say …

Who is Stephan? “I grew up in the Hex River Valley in the Western Cape, on a table grape farm, which our family has been farming for three generations. I attended high school at Paul Roos Gymnasium in Stellenbosch, matriculated in 1996.  Joined the Air Force after school and received my wings in 1999 at CFS Langebaanweg.  My initial intention was to fly fighters, but after much consideration and very good advice from my instructors, I eventually decided to head for the helicopter line.  I was based at various bases around the country, of which most time was spent at 22 Squadron at AFB Ysterplaat.  Some of my highlights include flood relief work in Mozambique in 2000 as well as 6 tours in Burundi with Alo III gunships and Oryx helicopters for the UN and AU.  After 10 years in the South African Air Force (SAAF), I joined the family farming business, whilst doing part time contract flying on Pumas in Pakistan, Sudan and Angola.  I decided to take up flying on a more permanent basis once again and therefore joined the AMS at the Oudtshoorn base.  I spent the last 8 years combining EMS flying with export table grape farming.  I studied agriculture, specialising in table grape production, at Elsenburg Agricultural College. Currently, I am busy studying B Comm Business Management through Unisa.  I got married in 2003 in Blouberg, Cape Town, and have since had three children who are currently 10, 8 and 3 years old.”

Did you always want to be a pilot? “I always had the desire to become a pilot.  My granddad was the first person to own and fly an airplane in the Hex River Valley in the 1930’s, which probably initiated the interest and dream of flying.  Watching Top Gun way too many times probably also played a role…”

How did your career start in the aero-medical field? “By joining AMS in 2009.  Previous exposure in the aero-medical field included various MVA’s with Oryx helicopters on the N1 in the Western Cape and Free State, flood relief in Mozambique in 2000 and earthquake relief work in the Kashmir region of Pakistan in 2005.”

What’s the best/worst thing that happened to you since you started at AMS? “Meeting Mohammed Shaik – still can’t decide whether it is the best or the worst thing….? lol”

What do you do in your spare time? “Spending as much time as possible with family and friends, camping, playing tennis with my daughters and running long distance to clear the mind.”

What’s the one thing about you few people know? “I’m an April fool!”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “The variation and excitement of every flight, not knowing where or to what type of incident you will be dispatched next.  Flying new and modern machines.  The diversity and challenges of the rescue environment. Working with professional and highly skilled personnel.  Spending every night at home.”

What is on your bedside table? “The Bible, Icarus by Deon Meyer and a variety of outdoor, 4x4 and financial magazines.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “I have had the privilege to be invited to Nelson Mandela and Graca Machel’s house in Maputo for lunch in 2000 and have been to Mandela’s house in Qunu in the Transkei where I met his extended family.  I have also had the privileged to do the tour of Robben Island prison with Nelson Mandela as our personal tour guide.  It was always a pleasure and honor to be in the presence of Mr. Mandela – a true gentleman and ambassador for our country and its rich history.  Dinner with Obama, Trump, Mandela, Bono and Roger Federer all around the same table would be rather interesting…”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What the weather is like in George – quickly check on AeroWeather.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “The three days my kids were born – an absolute amazing experience every time!”

If you could do any other job for just one day, what would it be? “Be a Tiger fishing guide in the Okavango Delta, Botswana.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Having a good bottle of red wine out in nature, next to a fire, with loved ones.”

What is the one thing you can’t live without? “Cappuccino!”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “Mocking Ford drivers (sorry Doc) – refer to next question…”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “If you can’t say something nice about someone, rather keep quiet.”

Any motto you live by? “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” Nelson Mandela

 

Team focus ...
  • stephan rossouw

Team focus ...

Today our journey of getting to know and introducing our team members takes us to the Ostrich capital of the world – Oudtshoorn, the largest town in the Little Karoo.  The AMS base in Oudtshoorn provides an emergency rescue and air ambulance service to the community. We take a glimpse into the life of one of our rotor wing pilots, Stephan Rossouw who has been with the organisation for eight years. A man with a good heart, a big smile and zest for life is a few words that is very fitting to this captain! Here’s what he had to say …

Who is Stephan? “I grew up in the Hex River Valley in the Western Cape, on a table grape farm, which our family has been farming for three generations. I attended high school at Paul Roos Gymnasium in Stellenbosch, matriculated in 1996.  Joined the Air Force after school and received my wings in 1999 at CFS Langebaanweg.  My initial intention was to fly fighters, but after much consideration and very good advice from my instructors, I eventually decided to head for the helicopter line.  I was based at various bases around the country, of which most time was spent at 22 Squadron at AFB Ysterplaat.  Some of my highlights include flood relief work in Mozambique in 2000 as well as 6 tours in Burundi with Alo III gunships and Oryx helicopters for the UN and AU.  After 10 years in the South African Air Force (SAAF), I joined the family farming business, whilst doing part time contract flying on Pumas in Pakistan, Sudan and Angola.  I decided to take up flying on a more permanent basis once again and therefore joined the AMS at the Oudtshoorn base.  I spent the last 8 years combining EMS flying with export table grape farming.  I studied agriculture, specialising in table grape production, at Elsenburg Agricultural College. Currently, I am busy studying B Comm Business Management through Unisa.  I got married in 2003 in Blouberg, Cape Town, and have since had three children who are currently 10, 8 and 3 years old.”

Did you always want to be a pilot? “I always had the desire to become a pilot.  My granddad was the first person to own and fly an airplane in the Hex River Valley in the 1930’s, which probably initiated the interest and dream of flying.  Watching Top Gun way too many times probably also played a role…”

How did your career start in the aero-medical field? “By joining AMS in 2009.  Previous exposure in the aero-medical field included various MVA’s with Oryx helicopters on the N1 in the Western Cape and Free State, flood relief in Mozambique in 2000 and earthquake relief work in the Kashmir region of Pakistan in 2005.”

What’s the best/worst thing that happened to you since you started at AMS? “Meeting Mohammed Shaik – still can’t decide whether it is the best or the worst thing….? lol”

What do you do in your spare time? “Spending as much time as possible with family and friends, camping, playing tennis with my daughters and running long distance to clear the mind.”

What’s the one thing about you few people know? “I’m an April fool!”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “The variation and excitement of every flight, not knowing where or to what type of incident you will be dispatched next.  Flying new and modern machines.  The diversity and challenges of the rescue environment. Working with professional and highly skilled personnel.  Spending every night at home.”

What is on your bedside table? “The Bible, Icarus by Deon Meyer and a variety of outdoor, 4x4 and financial magazines.”

If you could have dinner with five famous people from history, who would they be? “I have had the privilege to be invited to Nelson Mandela and Graca Machel’s house in Maputo for lunch in 2000 and have been to Mandela’s house in Qunu in the Transkei where I met his extended family.  I have also had the privileged to do the tour of Robben Island prison with Nelson Mandela as our personal tour guide.  It was always a pleasure and honor to be in the presence of Mr. Mandela – a true gentleman and ambassador for our country and its rich history.  Dinner with Obama, Trump, Mandela, Bono and Roger Federer all around the same table would be rather interesting…”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What the weather is like in George – quickly check on AeroWeather.”

What has been the happiest day of your life? “The three days my kids were born – an absolute amazing experience every time!”

If you could do any other job for just one day, what would it be? “Be a Tiger fishing guide in the Okavango Delta, Botswana.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Having a good bottle of red wine out in nature, next to a fire, with loved ones.”

What is the one thing you can’t live without? “Cappuccino!”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “Mocking Ford drivers (sorry Doc) – refer to next question…”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “If you can’t say something nice about someone, rather keep quiet.”

Any motto you live by? “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” Nelson Mandela

 

Introducing our team ... First member for 2017

With 2017 in full swing we hope this year will be filled with success, true happiness and good fortune for everyone. We are excited to continue this year embarking on our journey to introduce our team who work tirelessly to ensure this service reaches all communities. The AMS in partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health provides delivery of appropriate and effective healthcare to rural communities by flying specialists as well as healthcare support personnel – many of whom are volunteers to outlying hospitals. The air ambulance service complements the local road ambulance service by providing rapid emergency aero-medical transportation of patients who are critically ill or injured. Today we introduce Nokuthula Maphumulo; affectionately known as Thulie, Receptionist at the AMS King Shaka base. Thulie born and bred in KwaZulu-Natal grew up in the largest sugar producing districts in the world – Tongaat and later moved to Phoenix. 

Here’s a peep into her world…

What role do you fulfil in the organisation? I am a receptionist and perform administrative and coordination tasks at the front desk, also basic clerical tasks such as filing, copying documents etc. 

What do you enjoy most about your job? “To interact with the people on all levels …I love the friendly environment at work.”

 Where do you see yourself in the future? “I see myself in an executive management position in the Air Transport Management sector. I want to travel the world and have fun.” 

Any new year’s resolutions you want to share with us? “I only have one resolution, to complete my Bachelor of Commerce Degree.”

What do you do in your spare time? “I love going out with friends to the soccer stadium, it is fun and crazy at the same time!”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “To thank the man above for another day.” 

What kind of music do you like? “I like house music – I love to dance!”  

What is your greatest indulgence? “Prawns and hake with any side dish…yummy!”

What is the best gift anyone has ever given you? “A Jimmy Choo fragrance as a birthday gift from my best friend.”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “A friend once said to me “You may have it tough, but there is always someone out there who has it worse than you and they certainly don’t plan on giving up - so keep on pushing don’t give up.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “I want to break the habit of having coffee – it’s not good for my health.”

What brings you the greatest satisfaction?  “Being able to help someone.”

Any motto you live by?  “Be who you want to be not what others want to see.’’

Introducing our team ... First member for 2017

Introducing our team ... First member for 2017

With 2017 in full swing we hope this year will be filled with success, true happiness and good fortune for everyone. We are excited to continue this year embarking on our journey to introduce our team who work tirelessly to ensure this service reaches all communities. The AMS in partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health provides delivery of appropriate and effective healthcare to rural communities by flying specialists as well as healthcare support personnel – many of whom are volunteers to outlying hospitals. The air ambulance service complements the local road ambulance service by providing rapid emergency aero-medical transportation of patients who are critically ill or injured. Today we introduce Nokuthula Maphumulo; affectionately known as Thulie, Receptionist at the AMS King Shaka base. Thulie born and bred in KwaZulu-Natal grew up in the largest sugar producing districts in the world – Tongaat and later moved to Phoenix. 

Here’s a peep into her world…

What role do you fulfil in the organisation? I am a receptionist and perform administrative and coordination tasks at the front desk, also basic clerical tasks such as filing, copying documents etc. 

What do you enjoy most about your job? “To interact with the people on all levels …I love the friendly environment at work.”

 Where do you see yourself in the future? “I see myself in an executive management position in the Air Transport Management sector. I want to travel the world and have fun.” 

Any new year’s resolutions you want to share with us? “I only have one resolution, to complete my Bachelor of Commerce Degree.”

What do you do in your spare time? “I love going out with friends to the soccer stadium, it is fun and crazy at the same time!”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “To thank the man above for another day.” 

What kind of music do you like? “I like house music – I love to dance!”  

What is your greatest indulgence? “Prawns and hake with any side dish…yummy!”

What is the best gift anyone has ever given you? “A Jimmy Choo fragrance as a birthday gift from my best friend.”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “A friend once said to me “You may have it tough, but there is always someone out there who has it worse than you and they certainly don’t plan on giving up - so keep on pushing don’t give up.”

What is the habit you are proudest of breaking or want to break? “I want to break the habit of having coffee – it’s not good for my health.”

What brings you the greatest satisfaction?  “Being able to help someone.”

Any motto you live by?  “Be who you want to be not what others want to see.’’

Eden District/Central Karoo... celebrating 50 years of service delivery

Yesterday the AMS in partnership with the Western Cape Department of Health had the privilege to celebrate 50 years of service delivery to the community of the Eden/Central Karoo District with the local community of Oudtshoorn, the municipality, affiliated rescue organisations and members of the public. 2016 also marks the organisation's 11th year anniversary in the Eden/Central Karoo District. Executive Mayor Colan Sylvester officiated the event and was joined by members of his Mayoral Committee. Thank you to each and everyone that assisted to make the event a success. The event was also visited by a cobra snake that was caught by the local Fire Department after receiving a distressing call from someone in De Rust needing assistance to remove the snake from their home.  Thank you to the community of Oudtshoorn for allowing us to be of service to you.  Some food was also taken Helen  Bellinganhof Oudtshoorn ACVV Retirement Village. We look forward to continue to work with our partners and the community to continue to make a difference in the lives of all citizens. 

Eden District/Central Karoo... celebrating 50 years of service delivery

Eden District/Central Karoo... celebrating 50 years of service delivery

Yesterday the AMS in partnership with the Western Cape Department of Health had the privilege to celebrate 50 years of service delivery to the community of the Eden/Central Karoo District with the local community of Oudtshoorn, the municipality, affiliated rescue organisations and members of the public. 2016 also marks the organisation's 11th year anniversary in the Eden/Central Karoo District. Executive Mayor Colan Sylvester officiated the event and was joined by members of his Mayoral Committee. Thank you to each and everyone that assisted to make the event a success. The event was also visited by a cobra snake that was caught by the local Fire Department after receiving a distressing call from someone in De Rust needing assistance to remove the snake from their home.  Thank you to the community of Oudtshoorn for allowing us to be of service to you.  Some food was also taken Helen  Bellinganhof Oudtshoorn ACVV Retirement Village. We look forward to continue to work with our partners and the community to continue to make a difference in the lives of all citizens. 

Meet our team .. HR Administrator

Dubbed as someone who missed her calling in life by some of her fellow colleagues, Letitia Lewis HR Administrator has been with the organisation for just over six years. Letitia is a jazz enthusiast who in her second life should definitely be a Matron in the nursing environment! She loves interacting with people and enjoys letting her hair down!

Who is Letitia Lewis? “I am born and bred in Athlone, I am the youngest of three children, mother to one, I am passionate about people, I love the outdoors and enjoy the finer things in life.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “I love the interaction with my fellow colleagues and the challenge of different cultures and diversities.”

What do you do in your spare time? “My spare time is occupied by my son, my one year old husky, friends and family. To unwind I dance! I love dancing! I am a professional amateur jazz enthusiast! My last and most recent jazzathon was for the KFM whale watching weekend. I have also found a slight interest in the sensual side of Salsa.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “Thank you Father for making another day possible. As soon as my feet touched the floor I told myself…tonight I am getting to bed early, I can do with a few more hours of sleep BUT first I have to get to the sales today!”

What kind of music do you like? “Like durr… love jazz and R&B”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Watching crime series.”

What is the best gift anyone has ever given you? “My best and greatest gift is from the Father above …my son and the best family support I could ask for.”

What should you try at least once in your life? “Travel…it’s the best feeling ever!”

What brings you the greatest satisfaction? “The joy and happiness I see in my son’s eyes.”

Interesting places you have visited? “Cradock in the beautiful landscape of the Eastern Cape, Atlanta (Georgia) and Australia”.

What is on your bed side table? “My cell phone, a glass of cool drink, the book I am currently reading, This is my story not my life.”

What is your favourite word you like to use? “Focus.”

Meet our team .. HR Administrator

Meet our team .. HR Administrator

Dubbed as someone who missed her calling in life by some of her fellow colleagues, Letitia Lewis HR Administrator has been with the organisation for just over six years. Letitia is a jazz enthusiast who in her second life should definitely be a Matron in the nursing environment! She loves interacting with people and enjoys letting her hair down!

Who is Letitia Lewis? “I am born and bred in Athlone, I am the youngest of three children, mother to one, I am passionate about people, I love the outdoors and enjoy the finer things in life.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “I love the interaction with my fellow colleagues and the challenge of different cultures and diversities.”

What do you do in your spare time? “My spare time is occupied by my son, my one year old husky, friends and family. To unwind I dance! I love dancing! I am a professional amateur jazz enthusiast! My last and most recent jazzathon was for the KFM whale watching weekend. I have also found a slight interest in the sensual side of Salsa.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “Thank you Father for making another day possible. As soon as my feet touched the floor I told myself…tonight I am getting to bed early, I can do with a few more hours of sleep BUT first I have to get to the sales today!”

What kind of music do you like? “Like durr… love jazz and R&B”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Watching crime series.”

What is the best gift anyone has ever given you? “My best and greatest gift is from the Father above …my son and the best family support I could ask for.”

What should you try at least once in your life? “Travel…it’s the best feeling ever!”

What brings you the greatest satisfaction? “The joy and happiness I see in my son’s eyes.”

Interesting places you have visited? “Cradock in the beautiful landscape of the Eastern Cape, Atlanta (Georgia) and Australia”.

What is on your bed side table? “My cell phone, a glass of cool drink, the book I am currently reading, This is my story not my life.”

What is your favourite word you like to use? “Focus.”

Get to know our staff...

Born and bred in Transkei in the Eastern Cape, Pescott Pokwane based at the AMS King Shaka operation has the important responsibility of keeping the aircraft and base in a neat and tidy condition. Pescott’s early years growing up in the Eastern Cape has taught him patience, the true meaning of life and to appreciate small miracles. Here’s a look into his life …

What is your role within the organisation? “I work as a Hangar Assistant, my role is to keep the hangar clean and in orderly condition and make sure that the aircraft are neat inside and outside.” What would you say are the key characteristics for a person to be able to fulfil the position you currently fulfil in the organisation. “To be consistently brilliant week after week and month after month. Take pride in the work you do in order to do a great job.  You also have to be punctual.”What do you enjoy most about your job? “Interacting with employees on all different levels in the organisation.”What do you do in your spare time? “I love to garden because it calms me. Gardening is indeed soothing and it is a form of meditation for me.  I also spend some of my spare time in church.”What is your future plans/your dreams/ambitions, where do you see yourself in the future? “My future plans is to buy myself a car, my dream is to win the lottery, my ambitions are to travel the world.”    

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What does this new day have in store for me.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “KFC!”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “Don’t ever let someone tell you that you can’t do something.”Any motto you live by? “You want something, go get it. Period.”

 

Get to know our staff...

Get to know our staff...

Born and bred in Transkei in the Eastern Cape, Pescott Pokwane based at the AMS King Shaka operation has the important responsibility of keeping the aircraft and base in a neat and tidy condition. Pescott’s early years growing up in the Eastern Cape has taught him patience, the true meaning of life and to appreciate small miracles. Here’s a look into his life …

What is your role within the organisation? “I work as a Hangar Assistant, my role is to keep the hangar clean and in orderly condition and make sure that the aircraft are neat inside and outside.” What would you say are the key characteristics for a person to be able to fulfil the position you currently fulfil in the organisation. “To be consistently brilliant week after week and month after month. Take pride in the work you do in order to do a great job.  You also have to be punctual.”What do you enjoy most about your job? “Interacting with employees on all different levels in the organisation.”What do you do in your spare time? “I love to garden because it calms me. Gardening is indeed soothing and it is a form of meditation for me.  I also spend some of my spare time in church.”What is your future plans/your dreams/ambitions, where do you see yourself in the future? “My future plans is to buy myself a car, my dream is to win the lottery, my ambitions are to travel the world.”    

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “What does this new day have in store for me.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “KFC!”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “Don’t ever let someone tell you that you can’t do something.”Any motto you live by? “You want something, go get it. Period.”

 

Danie Laubscher
  • Danie Laubscher
  • Danie Laubscher

Meet our team ... Senior Fixed Wing Pilot

An individual with a wealth of knowledge, years of flying experience coupled with a streak of unpredictable adventure is exactly how to describe Danie Laubscher, Senior Fixed Wing Pilot based at the AMS’ Cape Town operation. Although Danie has been permanently employed since 2014, his involvement with the organisation dates back to 1998 while he was working for Swiss Air. Danie’s journey started with the AMS when he did the conversions of the AMS pilots when the organisation started operating the Pilatus PC 12 fixed wing aircraft. Danie was also involved with the Flying Doctor Service in KwaZulu-Natal before its official inception. He did the first flight with the management team from Durban International to Matatiele.

Among many of Danie’s interesting and memorable stories having the privilege of flying World Leaders and the King of Pop is definitely worth getting to know this pilot better. Danie had the privilege of flying Nelson Mandela and President Kagame (President of Rwanda) on a few occasions. He flew President Kagame for two years to Germany, England and America to mention a few destinations. In 1997 Danie also flew the King of Pop, Michael Jackson from the AMS Cape Town Base to Sun City.

Here’s a look into Danie’s life …

Where did you grow up: “I grew up in Nigeria and moved to Calvinia in the Northern Cape in South Africa at the age of 5 with my parents.”  

How did you get into aviation, is it something you always wanted to do: “My career in aviation started in 1973 with the Military.  After completing high school I decided I wanted to fly and at that time the only place I could do it was in the Military.  I initially joined the Military to fly helicopters but never got around to it.”

Tell us a little about your aviation career: “I left the Military in 1995 and joined Swiss Air based in Lanseria. I later joined Comair where I worked for the Commercial Airline Kulula. After two years I joined ExecuJet as Chief Pilot, I then went on to fly in Lagos in Nigeria for a few years before joining the AMS family. My full time appointment with AMS started in Durban, after a while I joined the Cape Town team where I am currently based.”

What do you enjoy most about your job?  “The people that I work with, I love the environment.”

Any special accolades obtained during your aviation career? “I received a few medals while I was in the Military. I received the PRO PATRIA MEDAL CUNENE for participation in Operation SAVANNAH in Angola.”  The following conditions were set out for the awarding of the medal: The recipients would have to have been involved in combat or a skirmish or combat situation or an incident caused by enemy activities, or have participated in a specific operation acknowledged by the Minister of Defence, or have served continuous period of 55 days or 90 days non-continuous duty in an operational area.

“I also received the Chief of the Defence Force’s Commendation Medal, awarded for planning and execution to establish exploration in Angola. The one medal I am the proudest of is the one I received for Bravery in 1981 - The Honoris Crux. I received this while working on Operation Protea (Operation Protea was a military operation during the South African Border War and Angolan Civil War).The decoration was awarded to members of the South African Defence Force for bravery in dangerous circumstances 

What do you do in your spare time? “I try to play golf, my wife and I love camping! The best place to be is to camp in the middle of nowhere, sit on my chair with a glass of red wine.”

What are some of the interesting places where you have camped? “Mokala situated on the South-West of Kimberley and the Kgalagadi located within the Southern Kalahari Desert – I absolutely love this place.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Red wine and biltong.”

What is the best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “When I was a pupil pilot in 1973 the Chief Instructor told us: when in doubt there is no doubt. If you are in doubt don’t continue with your mission. One saying that I will always remember is: I would rather sit on the ground wishing I was in the air than in the air wishing I was on the ground.”

Any motto you live by? “Take life as it comes, day by day.”

What is the one thing you want to do when you retire? “Travel around South Africa with my wife. There is so much to see and explore in our country. Travelling teaches you to live in the moment.”

Amongst all Danie’s accolades the most recently accolade obtained is that of Grandpa! We trust your beautiful granddaughter will bring you lots of joy and happiness.

Meet our team ... Senior Fixed Wing Pilot
  • Danie Laubscher
  • Danie Laubscher

Meet our team ... Senior Fixed Wing Pilot

An individual with a wealth of knowledge, years of flying experience coupled with a streak of unpredictable adventure is exactly how to describe Danie Laubscher, Senior Fixed Wing Pilot based at the AMS’ Cape Town operation. Although Danie has been permanently employed since 2014, his involvement with the organisation dates back to 1998 while he was working for Swiss Air. Danie’s journey started with the AMS when he did the conversions of the AMS pilots when the organisation started operating the Pilatus PC 12 fixed wing aircraft. Danie was also involved with the Flying Doctor Service in KwaZulu-Natal before its official inception. He did the first flight with the management team from Durban International to Matatiele.

Among many of Danie’s interesting and memorable stories having the privilege of flying World Leaders and the King of Pop is definitely worth getting to know this pilot better. Danie had the privilege of flying Nelson Mandela and President Kagame (President of Rwanda) on a few occasions. He flew President Kagame for two years to Germany, England and America to mention a few destinations. In 1997 Danie also flew the King of Pop, Michael Jackson from the AMS Cape Town Base to Sun City.

Here’s a look into Danie’s life …

Where did you grow up: “I grew up in Nigeria and moved to Calvinia in the Northern Cape in South Africa at the age of 5 with my parents.”  

How did you get into aviation, is it something you always wanted to do: “My career in aviation started in 1973 with the Military.  After completing high school I decided I wanted to fly and at that time the only place I could do it was in the Military.  I initially joined the Military to fly helicopters but never got around to it.”

Tell us a little about your aviation career: “I left the Military in 1995 and joined Swiss Air based in Lanseria. I later joined Comair where I worked for the Commercial Airline Kulula. After two years I joined ExecuJet as Chief Pilot, I then went on to fly in Lagos in Nigeria for a few years before joining the AMS family. My full time appointment with AMS started in Durban, after a while I joined the Cape Town team where I am currently based.”

What do you enjoy most about your job?  “The people that I work with, I love the environment.”

Any special accolades obtained during your aviation career? “I received a few medals while I was in the Military. I received the PRO PATRIA MEDAL CUNENE for participation in Operation SAVANNAH in Angola.”  The following conditions were set out for the awarding of the medal: The recipients would have to have been involved in combat or a skirmish or combat situation or an incident caused by enemy activities, or have participated in a specific operation acknowledged by the Minister of Defence, or have served continuous period of 55 days or 90 days non-continuous duty in an operational area.

“I also received the Chief of the Defence Force’s Commendation Medal, awarded for planning and execution to establish exploration in Angola. The one medal I am the proudest of is the one I received for Bravery in 1981 - The Honoris Crux. I received this while working on Operation Protea (Operation Protea was a military operation during the South African Border War and Angolan Civil War).The decoration was awarded to members of the South African Defence Force for bravery in dangerous circumstances 

What do you do in your spare time? “I try to play golf, my wife and I love camping! The best place to be is to camp in the middle of nowhere, sit on my chair with a glass of red wine.”

What are some of the interesting places where you have camped? “Mokala situated on the South-West of Kimberley and the Kgalagadi located within the Southern Kalahari Desert – I absolutely love this place.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Red wine and biltong.”

What is the best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “When I was a pupil pilot in 1973 the Chief Instructor told us: when in doubt there is no doubt. If you are in doubt don’t continue with your mission. One saying that I will always remember is: I would rather sit on the ground wishing I was in the air than in the air wishing I was on the ground.”

Any motto you live by? “Take life as it comes, day by day.”

What is the one thing you want to do when you retire? “Travel around South Africa with my wife. There is so much to see and explore in our country. Travelling teaches you to live in the moment.”

Amongst all Danie’s accolades the most recently accolade obtained is that of Grandpa! We trust your beautiful granddaughter will bring you lots of joy and happiness.

Nokuthula Mchunu
  • Nokuthula Mchunu

Staff focus - Flying Doctor Service

The AMS in partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Department of Health provide delivery of appropriate and effective healthcare to rural communities by flying both specialists as well as healthcare support personnel – many of whom are volunteers - to outlying hospitals. This flagship programme called ‘The Flying Doctor Outreach Service’ provides specialist support to both district and secondary level hospitals in the outlying areas of KZN. This service started on the 1st of June 1998 and currently delivers specialist services to approximately 16 000 patients annually. The effective co-ordination and management of this programme is achieved through the tireless work of the various individuals in the ground team. Today we chat to Nokuthula Mchunu also known as Noks. Nokuthula has been with the AMS for seven years and fulfils the role of Flying Doctor Service Assistant. Her role involves looking after the Department and ensuring that this service runs smoothly.

Here’s a peep into her world …Where did you grow up? Tell us a little about your background. “I was born in KZN in a small town called Empangeni. I come from a family of three children.  At the age of 5 my family moved to in a small township in Durban called Lamontville where I grew up.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “The experience I’ve gained and things I’ve learnt over the years makes me enjoy my job. I thoroughly enjoy working with the pilots – it really helps me learn so much about aviation. Working with the doctors on the outreach clinics helps me understand and appreciate the great work the doctors do out there.”   

What do you do in your spare time? “I read a lot, watch movies, listen to music and I love going out with friends and family.”

What would you say are the key characteristics for a person to be able to fulfil the position you currently fulfil in the organisation? “The ability to cope and work under pressure, the ability to prioritise tasks, multitask and manage conflicting demands, work as part of a team, and be able work without supervision.” 

What is your future plans/your dreams/ambitions, where do you see yourself in the future? “I see myself growing into a supervisor or manager where I will be able to use my skills to support others.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “When I woke up this morning I thanked God for giving me another chance in life, for me to experience His great love towards me and to enjoy His blessings.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Well, ice cream must be the number one indulgence, as a child I could eat a full cup and not feel sick afterwards. Second in line is definitely pizza oh and of course chocolate, every kind and flavour, as much as I can.”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “Rather struggle and work hard for everything you have than have someone tell me you wouldn’t have had that if it wasn’t for me.”

Any motto you live by? “Surround yourself with people that push you to be and do better.”

Staff focus - Flying Doctor Service
  • Nokuthula Mchunu

Staff focus - Flying Doctor Service

The AMS in partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Department of Health provide delivery of appropriate and effective healthcare to rural communities by flying both specialists as well as healthcare support personnel – many of whom are volunteers - to outlying hospitals. This flagship programme called ‘The Flying Doctor Outreach Service’ provides specialist support to both district and secondary level hospitals in the outlying areas of KZN. This service started on the 1st of June 1998 and currently delivers specialist services to approximately 16 000 patients annually. The effective co-ordination and management of this programme is achieved through the tireless work of the various individuals in the ground team. Today we chat to Nokuthula Mchunu also known as Noks. Nokuthula has been with the AMS for seven years and fulfils the role of Flying Doctor Service Assistant. Her role involves looking after the Department and ensuring that this service runs smoothly.

Here’s a peep into her world …Where did you grow up? Tell us a little about your background. “I was born in KZN in a small town called Empangeni. I come from a family of three children.  At the age of 5 my family moved to in a small township in Durban called Lamontville where I grew up.”

What do you enjoy most about your job? “The experience I’ve gained and things I’ve learnt over the years makes me enjoy my job. I thoroughly enjoy working with the pilots – it really helps me learn so much about aviation. Working with the doctors on the outreach clinics helps me understand and appreciate the great work the doctors do out there.”   

What do you do in your spare time? “I read a lot, watch movies, listen to music and I love going out with friends and family.”

What would you say are the key characteristics for a person to be able to fulfil the position you currently fulfil in the organisation? “The ability to cope and work under pressure, the ability to prioritise tasks, multitask and manage conflicting demands, work as part of a team, and be able work without supervision.” 

What is your future plans/your dreams/ambitions, where do you see yourself in the future? “I see myself growing into a supervisor or manager where I will be able to use my skills to support others.”

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? “When I woke up this morning I thanked God for giving me another chance in life, for me to experience His great love towards me and to enjoy His blessings.”

What is your greatest indulgence? “Well, ice cream must be the number one indulgence, as a child I could eat a full cup and not feel sick afterwards. Second in line is definitely pizza oh and of course chocolate, every kind and flavour, as much as I can.”

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? “Rather struggle and work hard for everything you have than have someone tell me you wouldn’t have had that if it wasn’t for me.”

Any motto you live by? “Surround yourself with people that push you to be and do better.”