Lone Survivor of Medical Chopper Crash Dies

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The lone survivor of last weekend's mid-air crash of two medical helicopters died Friday at a hospital here, authorities said.

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James Taylor was a registered nurse and was flying on one helicopter that was ferrying a patient from the south rim of the Grand Canyon to a Flagstaff hospital.

The chopper collided with another medical helicopter last Sunday in a wooded area about a half-mile from the hospital, killing six people aboard the two crafts.

Taylor, 36, had been in critical condition since being taken to Flagstaff Medical Center after the fiery crash.

He was a registered nurse at St. Mark's Hospital in Salt Lake City and was working his second job as a flight nurse in Arizona at the time of the crash.

A memorial service for the six people who died in the collision was set for 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Pine Mountain Amphitheater in Flagstaff. It will be open to the public and the media.

Meanwhile, the lead official investigating the fatal crash of two medical helicopters said he'll have a report ready sometime next week.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Aaron Sauer said his team continues to look at surveillance video, interview with witnesses and hospital staff to determine what happened before the choppers collided.

The engine control units from both aircraft also are being sent to the manufacturer in Hartford, Conn., to extract data about the helicopters' altitude and speed.

Earlier in the week, investigators picked through the wreckage. They found that the tail of one helicopter showed signs that it had been hit by a rotor blade.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the Flagstaff collision was only the second mid-air crash involving a medical helicopter in the past 25 years, and the first that involved two medical aircraft.

One of the helicopters was operated by Air Methods from Englewood, Colo., and the other was from Classic Helicopters of Woods Cross, Utah.