Former South African cricket player Boeta Dippenaar nowadays finds himself flying the Bell 222 helicopter for ROCKET HEMS.
Dippenaar, who is married and the father of three daughters, says the most rewarding part of being a pilot for an air ambulance, is being part of an operation that can save lives.
“Making a difference in people’s lives, is the most rewarding part of my job. Someone’s health is their most important asset and by saving someone’s life, you help to protect this important asset.”
Dippenaar started with his training while he still played for the Proteas.
“I never planned to become a pilot. While I was still playing cricket, I was given the opportunity to fly in a helicopter a few times and I liked it a lot. Once I started with my pilot training, I just kept going.”
Dippenaar started flying in 2009 and is one of the chief pilots at ROCKET since they started operating in 2020.
Dippenaar completed his PPL license in 2005 and his CPL license in 2009. He is currently doing his Grade 1 instructors rating.
Dippenaar stopped playing cricket in 2012.
He says he will never forget the time he had to fly a three week old baby from Nelspruit to Sunninghill. “It is always special to be part of saving a child’s life. In this incident, a baby needed specific facilities that weren’t available, so we had to fly the baby to Sunning Hill. It was something to experience.”
His plans for the future includes making sure that ROCKET, already a world class ambulance service, improves in the specialist service.
“Our aim is to ensure the footprint we leave behind is noticeable and therefore leaves an impact on the world. improves its focus in the delivery of a more specialized service”