Search and Rescue: A true gift to the community

By Tim Huether

In last week’s Bennett County Booster, we told the story of a local youth becoming lost, then successfully found. Playing a vital role in the search and rescue efforts were many local individuals who are part of the Martin Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue.

Chris O’Bryan is the Martin Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Chief and was on hand for the rescue efforts, helping to coordinate the efforts to find 13-year-old Dante` Rascher.

The heart-warming story was just before Thanksgiving and on the doorstep of the Christmas season, reminding us what a gift it really is to have this outstanding team of individuals in our community. They rise up when called on for this kind of situation and other emergencies from fires, to accidents and other calls at all times of the day and night, weekdays and weekends.

“The search and rescue side of the fire department provides a critical service to the community,” said Chief Chris O’Bryan. “While not as visible as a large grass fire or house fire, search and rescue is typically a response to a direct life safety need. Searching for a lost person, rope rescue, vehicle extrication and confined space rescue are directly related to an immediate need. Every search or rescue call carries its own set of skills and technical requirements. Specialized tools and training are required.”

“Many of the members have had training for search and rescue,” continued O’Bryan. “Based on the nature of the call, all firefighters are utilized.” 

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