Lake Nebagamon volunteers earn honors for emergency medical servicesMembers of the Lake Nebagamon Volunteer Fire Department don’t expect awards for what they do, but they got one anyway.
By: Maria Lockwood, Superior Telegram
Members of the Lake Nebagamon Volunteer Fire Department don’t expect awards for what they do, but they got one anyway.
In April, the department’s first responders were singled out for their work on a trauma case during an EMS Recognition Event at St. Luke’s.
The department’s EMS (Emergency Medical Services) personnel, along with Gold Cross Ambulance and Lifelink, teamed up on a call and made a difference.
All links in the chain of care did an excellent job and were beneficial to the patient outcome, said Stan Sadenwasser, trauma program manager for St. Luke’s.
“It was a life or death situation, and they survived,” said Capt. Swan Dawson of the Lake Nebagamon Volunteer Fire Department.
In more than 10 years of holding the event, it was the first time St. Luke’s had honored Lake Nebagamon’s department.
“It’s hugely outstanding,” Sadenwasser said.
The department appreciated the award. So was a less public show of thanks from Hal and Carolyn Hudson last month.
“They brought us a wonderful homemade cake,” Dawson said.
Members of the fire department responded to the Hudson home the night of May 27 after lightning struck a white pine next to the house.
“Little did we know that trees can explode when struck by lightning,” Carolyn Hudson wrote in an email. “The strong electric current heats the sap and the pressure of the steam can make the trunk burst.
“This is exactly what happened to our tree … all while we were sound asleep.”
Chunks of tree shot off like rockets into the house, creating debris and broken glass. Luckily, no one was injured. Members of the Lake Nebagamon Fire Department responded to the call.
“After assessing the area to determine that we were in no danger for fire, they went above and beyond the call of duty by boarding up our broken windows to avoid further damage from the rain,” Hudson said. “Each and every one of the volunteers was comforting to us in our moment of great need.”
The fire department has 18 members, seven of whom are also first responders. In 2011, they responded to 120 calls, which run the gamut from house fires and accidents to medical calls and wildfires, including a few lightning strike calls each year.
“We appreciate everybody’s support and just want people to know all members of the fire department are volunteers who put in a lot of time and training,” Dawson said.
Sadenwasser has been many different links in the chain of care — first responder, flight nurse, paramedic and more.
“Being a first responder, I think one of the most difficult things to do is treat someone you know. To be able to live in the community and day in, day out help members of the community is exceptional,” he said.
“Our volunteer fire department is a great asset to our community,” Hudson said.
Volunteer fire departments throughout Douglas County are always in need of members. To volunteer, call (888) 926-1676 or contact your local department. A number of Saturday events in Lake Nebagamon help support the department. Proceeds from the annual Dragin’ Tail Race, as well as an all-day raffle at the Lake Nebagamon Auditorium, are earmarked for the Lake Nebagamon Volunteer Fire Department.