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Director's Dialogue September 2014

It has been busy since my last Directors Dialogue. We had the large countywide callout to Needles and mutual aid call outs to Mt. Whitney and San Diego County. The Annual Training Facility clean up was held, the first BSAR class from Heart Bar graduated and the Camp No Limits project in Big Bear (Chairman Dennis McWhinney of the Big Bear Posse) was conducted for our amputee kids. The AMET program is up and running thanks to Dr. Debbie Bervel and Marie Podboy and the new SAR Standards had their annual review by our SAR Standards Committee.

To top all of this off, we had the very long lasting search in 29 Palms that started in July. For days and weeks of braving the heat and flash floods our SAR folks searched for our missing subject. Finally after numerous callouts our subject was found. It was a huge success for the department and showed the dedication of our SAR Volunteers to complete the tasks put before them. The ICS Team was at its best considering some very difficult conditions and my hat goes off to those members of that team. I am still amazed by the teamwork and dedication of our SAR Volunteers when it comes to finding our lost subjects in San Bernardino County.

The Sheriff, John McMahon, to show his appreciation for all of your hard work with this callout has scheduled a SAR Appreciation Picnic that is to be held tomorrow… Sept 13th. You have been notified by your Unit Commanders and Coordinators and have received flyers from Volunteer Forces. We are now hoping for a tremendous turn out by our SAR members and their families. The Department, Volunteer Forces and the SAR Council Board of Directors are looking forward to seeing you tomorrow at Covington Park in Morongo Valley.
On a personal note, I would like to thank all of our Unit Commanders for their quick responses to a number of events that we are having this month. Headcounts were imperative for the 29 Palms Debrief, the Sheriffs Picnic and for the upcoming SAR Council Meeting. Each Commander supplied that information in a very timely manner and it was deeply appreciated. Thank you!


SHERIFF’S SAR APPRECIATION PICNIC: As mentioned above, this event hosted by Sheriff McMahon, will be tomorrow. Activities will start at 10 a.m. and food and drinks will be provided to all who attend. Hope to see you all there.

SAR COUNCIL MEETING: The next meeting will be on September 17th at Headquarters. The meeting will be called to order at 7 p.m. Please plan on attending and sending at least two members from your unit…..if not more. Please attend. The Sheriff and the entire Executive Staff will be attending this meeting. Volunteer Forces, and the SAR Council would appreciate a good turnout by your SAR Members. Refreshments will be provided.

6TH ANNUAL MSAR COUNTYWIDE TRAINING: This event, which was held in August, was sponsored by the SAR Council and hosted by the MSAR Committee. Volunteer Forces secured Culinary for us for the meals that were served on the day of the training and the food as always was excellent. Chairman Hap Hatch, Co-Chairs Alex Garcia and Mike Smith put together the best MSAR training that we have had by far. Excellent organization, classroom instruction and the field exercise capped off a day that was very informative and lots of fun. Congratulations to the committee and a big thank you to all of the Mounted SAR members who attended.

4th OHVSAR COUNTyWDE TRAINING: September 13th was the date of this training, but it has been determined that it will be postponed until a later date to be announced. Chairman Ron Pesch will be setting that date in the very near future and sending out the information.

BSAR: with Headmaster Wes Podboy and his staff, BSAR is coming up once again in September, starting on the weekend of Sept 20th and 21st. The additional two weekends will be held on October 4 and 5th and October 18 and 19th. All students are required to spend all three of the Saturday nights at the Training Facility. Mentors will be needed for the training exercise on the 19th, please contact me ASAP if you would like to help out. If your unit has any students in the class, it’s customary that you send one or two experienced SAR members to lend us a hand for the field training exercise.

HELITAC: The SAR Council will be hosting a class on Saturday, October 4th for those members who need to certify or recertify that didn’t have the opportunity to do so with their units. We have 25 spaces available, contact me ASAP to reserve a place. If you say you are going to attend please do so. If you cant attend after signing up, please advise me of that at once since we usually have members on a waiting list.

SHERIFF’S RODEO-SAR COUNCIL’S PR AND RAFFLE BOOTH: Andra Pesch, our Chairwoman for this project, is looking for donated Man Cave type items for our raffle. She is also looking for volunteers to help out on September 26, 27 and 28th. Remember if you have an item your unit wishes to sell or if you would like to come down to help with recruiting prospect members please let her know.

SAR CITY: Mark October 10 and 12th on your calendars for this annual training event that will be held at the Barstow Community College facility, hosted by the Barstow Desert Rescue unit. Numerous SAR classes are offered and there are a host of vendors who participate. Please support the Barstow unit and attend.

Another year of SAR is approaching its end and I just want to take a moment to thank all of your SAR Members for another outstanding year. We still have a lot of events to attend, so we still have work yet to be done, but as the year end draws nearer and with the holidays coming up soon I wanted to remind all of you to … Be Safe.

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