El Paso ambulance to see new life in Ukraine

An ambulance from the El Paso Emergency Squad will soon be filled with donations and on its way...
An ambulance from the El Paso Emergency Squad will soon be filled with donations and on its way to Ukraine.(25 News/Heart of Illinois ABC)
Published: May. 10, 2022 at 7:12 PM CDT
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EL PASO (Heart of Illinois ABC) - With nearly 200,000 miles on its odometer, one El Paso ambulance is no stranger to saving lives.

Now, it will have the same mission, on a new continent, in war-torn, besieged Ukraine.

“EMS is based on humanitarian efforts, and that’s what this is all about,” said El Paso Emergency Squad Chief Karen Krug.

This ambulance will be on its way to Ukraine in less than a week, filled with donated items like a cot and bandages from surrounding communities.

“It’s linking the chain of humanity and support to get supplies together so that these things can go to the people who need assistance,” Krug said.

The El Paso Emergency Squad is working with a group that has already arranged for several other ambulance deliveries to Ukraine, including from AMT and OSF.

Chris Hanson, OSF’s Vice President of Governmental Relations, is helping facilitate those transfers.

“It took AMT and OSF to get the ball rolling on this, and I’m so proud to be a part of that,” he said. “I think it’s great that Illinois is continuing to contribute.”

Manson says they are targeting ambulances at the end of their lives in America but that still have plenty more to give to the world.

In El Paso, they are still seeking more donations from the community of crucial medical supplies like trauma-related items, bandages, anti-clotting agents, splints, tourniquets and trauma bandages.

Once it crosses into Ukraine, the country’s EMS services will decide where in the country it will go.

“If it saves one life, it will have accomplished what we’ve intended for it to do,” said El Paso Fire Protection District President Tim Ruestman.

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