Flight Paramedic Randy Bever

Flight Nurse Chris Frakes


Medevac Pilot James Freudenberg

On August 27, 2011, three crew members died in the line of duty along with their patient when a Missourimedical helicopter crashed.  The three crew members: Randy Bever CFRN, Chris Frakes EMT-P, James Freudenberg Pilot, were caring for their patient, Terry Tacoronte. 

MOSBY, Mo. (AP) — A medical helicopter crashed in northwestern Missouri late Friday near a small airport where it planned to stop for fuel, killing all four people on board, authorities said.

The Eurocopter AS-350 was carrying three crew members and a patient when it went down at about 7 p.m. in a field a mile north ofMidwestNationalAirCenter, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Lynn Lunsford said. The airport is located near the smallClayCountycommunity of Mosby, about 20 miles northeast ofKansas City.  Lunsford said the helicopter was flying to theKansas Citysuburb ofLiberty. He said the aircraft was based in the northwesternMissouri cityofSt. Joseph, but he could not confirm that the flight originated there.  The helicopter was owned by Air Methods Corp., an Englewood, Colo.-based air ambulance operator, Lunsford said.

Although the helicopter planned to take on fuel at the airport in Mosby, Lunsford said there was no immediate indication of what caused the crash.  “At this point it’s too early to try to speculate at all about what might have happened,” he said.  Investigators from the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board were expected to arrive at the scene Saturday morning, Lunsford said. He did not expect more information to be released Friday night.  Authorities inClayCountyand Mosby referred questions about the crash to the FAA.

Last year, there were at least 12 medevac helicopter crashes, including six that claimed the lives of a total of 16 crew members, according to the NTSB. It’s been almost a year since the last fatal crash occurred.  The country saw a record number of emergency helicopter crashes in 2008, when there were a dozen crashes killing a total of 29 people.

Medevac Pilot James Freudenberg  joined the company in 2010 after flying for the U.S. Army in Afghanistan.  Freudenberg had 2,153 flight hours, most of them in helicopters.  Flight Paramedic Randy Bever joined the company in 1998 when the helicopter ambulance service started in St. Joseph. Flight Nurse Chris Frakes had been with the company since 2006.  Please join with us in sending our condolences to the family and peers of Flight Paramedic Randy Bever, Flight Nurse Chris Frakes, and Medevac Pilot James Freudenberg.


 Randall Joe Bever, 47, Savannah, died Friday, August 26, 2011. He was born September 6, 1963, to Joseph Harold and Marilyn Lucille (Weir) Bever.

Randy graduated from South Nodaway High School in 1981 where he played baseball and football. While in high school, Randy worked as a nurse’s aid at Saint Francis Hospital in Maryville, Mo. After high school, Randy joined the Missouri Army National Guard and completed his basic training at Fort Jackson, S.C. Randy served as a specialist with the Headquarters Battery 1/129th Field Artillery in 1981 for six years as a combat medic and was honorably discharged in 1987.

Randy worked at numerous Ambulance Districts throughout the Northwest Missouri area as a Paramedic. Those Ambulance Districts include: Nodaway County, Heartland Paramedics, Gold Cross, Northland Regional, Tri-County, Daviess County and Andrew County. Randy served as a Supervisor at Gold Cross.

He received an Associate Degree in Nursing from Excelsior College and worked in many roles to include: Staff Nurse, Resource Nurse, Educator and Preceptor in the Emergency Room at Heartland Regional Medical Center and St. Luke’s Hospital. Simultaneously, Randy served as an air crew member in the role of an EMT-P/RN in 1998 for LifeNet Air Medical Services where he later became/maintained a Chief Flight Nurse position/Base Supervisor in 2000 at the St. Joseph, Missouri Rosecrans Airbase.

In addition to working shifts in the Emergency Room and on the helicopter, he also taught classes for the American Heart Association and Emergency Nurses Association. Randy frequently mentored paramedic and nursing students and other health professionals. He was a member of the Emergency Nurses Association, Air and Surface Transport Nurses Association, and the Missouri Emergency Medical Association. Randy had a strong work ethic and was employed by most of these services at the same time. He married the love of his life and soul mate Shanna Bascue June 24, 2006.

Randy loved his career, his family and friends but, eight months ago there was a change in Randy.  A little boy named Ja’Mar came into his life. Randy chose to call his little man “Boo Boo”. Randy felt like “BooBoo” resembled the character from Yogi the Bear. The two were inseparable. He also enjoyed working out, playing softball and watching sports.

Randy had an Angels touch, his work went beyond the walls of the health care profession. He has touched countless lives. When situations were at their worst the presence of Randy would create calm during chaos. Just a little grin from Randy would give his co-workers the confidence to perform in the most stressful situations. Randy is a Hero’s Hero.

He was preceded in death by his father; grandparents, Basil and Juanita Weir and Harold and Doris Bever.  Survivors: his wife, five sons, Justin Randall Bever, Aaron Matthew Bever, Bailey Bascue, Brandon Bascue, and Brysen Bascue; two daughters, Taylor Michelle Hurt and Katie Bascue; grandson, Ja’Mar Hawkins Jr. (BooBoo); mother, Marilyn Weir; brothers, Ricky Ray Bever, Ryan Scott Bever, and Shane Earl Whited; sisters, Rhonda Jean Vinzant, Shelly Renee’ Steinman, Traci Lynn Williamson, Jill Wieland, and Jodi Robbins; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

Service: 10 a.m. Thursday, Word of Life Church. The family will receive friends 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Meierhoffer Funeral Home and Crematory.  The family is establishing a fund for nursing students at Missouri Western State University.


Rest easy, brothers. We’ve got it from here.”

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