Graphic: Looking back in time
It was a sunny day in March 1965. Mr Jan Meloy was working on the Moomba oil and gas fields in South Australia when he was badly injured in a freak workplace accident.
“I was working on the oil rig with equipment and a big chain with steel on either side dragged against my ankle. When it came across my leg it took off all the skin and flesh and actually ground down into my bone,” Jan recalled.
The injury caused a lot of damage and broke his bone in many places. Luckily for Jan, the Royal Flying Doctor Service was called into Moomba to retrieve him.
“Thank goodness for the Flying Doctor! I will never ever forget what they did. They picked me up and flew me to Port Augusta, and then the Royal Ambulance drove me from Port Augusta to Adelaide Hospital where they were able to fix me up.”
Jan stayed in Adelaide Hospital for quite a while due to the severity of his injuries. He required skin grafts and surgery. But despite his ankle never fully recovering, he says the doctors “did a tremendous job.”
Now 84 years old, Jan is a long-time supporter of the Flying Doctor, regularly giving to the service over the years. “The Flying Doctor is deserving of the support. I will donate to the RFDS forever,” Jan said.
We are so glad the Flying Doctor was able to assist Jan all those years ago and we are so grateful for his ongoing support.