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by Jennifer Wetzel | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016, 8:48 AM
Former Vanderbilt flight nurse Tom Grubbs, R.N., EMT, was inducted into the Tennessee Aviation Hall of Fame on Nov. 5 for his extraordinary career with Vanderbilt LifeFlight.
Grubbs retired in 2015 after 31 years and 6,000 flights with the program. He remains LifeFlight’s longest-serving flight nurse.
Grubbs joined Vanderbilt LifeFlight soon after it began in July 1984, when flight nursing was a new field for civilian nurses. At that time, Vanderbilt had five other flight nurses and a single helicopter. Today there are more than 85 flight medical personnel, seven helicopters, a fixed-wing air ambulance and eight ground ambulances.
“For many flight nurses, reaching 1,000 patient flights is a career highlight. To reach almost 6,000 is probably more than anyone else in civilian flight nursing history,” said Kevin Nooner, MSN, R.N., EMT-P, interim director of LifeFlight.
“Tom has been a true lifesaver to so many people and touched so many lives. We have been blessed and enriched to have him be a part of our team.”
The Tennessee Aviation Hall of Fame was established to recognize, honor and enshrine individuals whose leadership in or for aviation, whether by exceptional service or extraordinary achievement, has made an enduring contribution to aviation for Tennessee, the nation or the world.
Established in 2001 as Tennessee’s Official Aviation Hall of Fame by the 102nd General Assembly, those inducted are recipients of Tennessee’s highest honor in aviation or aerospace.
Since its inaugural inductions event in 2002, the Aviation Hall of Fame has enshrined 57 people who have made significant and enduring contributions to or through aviation or aerospace.
Jennifer Wetzel, (615) 322-4747
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