Aspiring Eagle Scout paints Frick helipad near Mt. Pleasant
It's a situation during which seconds lost could cost someone their life, but seconds gained just might save it.
When an emergency transport helicopter approaches a medical facility such as Excela Health Frick Hospital near Mt. Pleasant, it is of utmost importance that the pilot immediately be able to locate the emergency helipad regardless of time of day or weather conditions, said Tom Bageant, who has worked there has a respiratory therapist there for more than two decades.
“When you're flying a helicopter and you're looking for landing spot at a hospital, you want to not have any hesitation on where it is,” said Bageant, 63, of East Huntingdon.
That will not be an issue for the foreseeable future at the Church Street facility due to the hard work of one Colt Miller.
Miller, 16, a member of Boy Scouts of America Troop 133 in Mt. Pleasant and the son of Paul and Janice Miller of Bullskin, recently was required to earn a Community Service Project Badge in his pursuit of certification as an Eagle Scout.
While visiting his grandmother, Lola Stillwagon of Bullskin, last winter at the hospital with his family, Miller received a suggestion from Bageant, a longtime family friend and mentor, on a possible project.
“He talked about me repainting the hospital's helipad. Tom pushed me to go for it,” Miller said. “He's a real motivator.”
With that, Miller began the process of meeting with various hospital staff including Frank Sebek, the director of facilities management there.
Once Sebek showed Miller the weather-worn helipad, he knew he'd found his project.
“It looked like it needed help. Since I could choose a project, I decided to help out the hospital,” Miller said.
With supplies donated by Excela Health — including five gallons of white paint and two gallons red paint — and assistance offered by his friend and fellow Boy Scout Greg Rosenstel, 15, of Dunbar, Miller was able to clean, prime and paint the hospital's helipad in just one day in late August.
“I had fun doing it and I glad I got to help out the community,” Miller said.
Miller also did his mentor proud.
“I'm proud of him. He did a nice job, and it really makes a difference,” Bageant said. “Just the visibility of heliport, it's a win-win situation for Colt.
“When an Eagle Scout completes his project, it benefits the community. Colt painted the helipad, and that helps the helicopter land safely, and that helps bring patients in and out, and in the end it helps everyone.”
Miller — who joined the Cub Scouts in the first grade — said he must now earn only an Environmental Science Badge and his Citizenship in the World Badge before Connellsville Area junior can go before the Eagle Scout board of review for certification.
“But this was a huge thing to complete,” said Miller of the helipad project.
A.J. Panian is a staff editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-547-5722 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Downie, Farnham bringing a much-needed edge to the Penguins
- Rossi: Steelers rising fast in mediocre AFC
- Steelers clinch trip to postseason with big victory over Chiefs
- Steelers offense learning to slam door
- Pittsburgh mayor Peduto goes ‘Undercover’ for CBS reality show
- Steelers-Bengals game to start at 8:30 p.m.
- Search for Duquesne University graduate Kochu continues
- Pittsburgh police doubling up on duty after potential threats
- Man shot in Allentown home
- Missed chances haunt Chiefs against Steelers
- Heyward, swarming defense get best of Chiefs in Steelers’ win