July 22, 2017

** UK paramedic in Wales missing; police continue to investigate

** Former Canadian combat medic cries foul over military’s failure to address training accident

UNITED KINGDOM NEWS

** Welsh police in Talgarth continue to search for a paramedic who went missing January 3rd. The Bristol Post (Michael Yong/January 6) said David Skeen,51, was last seen around 9 a.m. that day when he told family members he was going for a jog but never returned. According to the newspaper, Skeen had only recently moved to the area from Bristol. As a result of his disappearance, friends and former colleagues have offered to start a search of their own. Police, however, have declined the help, saying it is not appropriate at this time.

CANADA NEWS

** There will be no inquiry into a 2010 Canadian military training accident that injured a combat medic and ended her career. That is the word from CBC (Murray Brewster/January 5) which said Denise Hepburn was given the news just before Christmas. According to the news site, Hepburn was told via letter that Defence Staff Chief General Jonathan Vance had declined to look further into the incident despite saying it was preventable. Hepburn, who went by her maiden name Gallagher at the time, suffered a traumatic brain injury and fractured vertebrae in her neck after jumping from a helicopter into Lake Ontario. Initially declining the jump, Hepburn said she was told the aircraft would only be 3 ½ metres above the water and that the winds were light. In actuality, the chopper was some 12 metres from the surface and heavy winds ended with her landing sideways in the water. She was released from the military on medical grounds in November 2014 after weeks of hospitalization and recovery. Hepburn said she had to file a freedom of information request to find out the results of the initial investigation into the accident. She said the report downgraded the severity of her injuries and that one soldier’s testimony was blatantly false. There is no word on what Hepburn’s next step in the matter will be.

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