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Heather Lake Mission 5/16/2021

May 19, 2021

On Sunday night, 5-16-2021, at about 8:30pm, 911 was notified of an injured hiker on the Heather Lake trail on the Mountain Loop Highway. The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue deputy was dispatched and quickly determined from the reporting friends that the person had a leg injury and was not able to walk. The deputy then called out Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue and 14 volunteers responded. The volunteers headed up the Heather Lake trail and found the injured person and 2 friends about 2 miles up trail. The volunteers then used their wheeled litter to carry the injured person back down to the trailhead; arriving there at about 4:30am to the subject’s waiting and very grateful family and friends. As always SAR encourages all hikers to carry the Ten Essentials and leave word with a responsible person of where you went and when you’ll be back. Yesterday started out as a beautiful day. But if you get disoriented, lost or injured and can’t move, what started out as a perfect day can become a very long and uncomfortable night. Thank you to our 14 volunteers for the quick response and successful overnight rescue mission. This would […]

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2020 Annual Terry Tibke Memorial Award

April 23, 2021

Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue 2020 Annual Terry Tibke Memorial Award Honoree Edwin Prada Of the previous well deserving 43 annual Tibke Honorees, it would be very hard to find one that epitomizes the spirit of Terry Tibke more than Edwin Prada. Within SAR, there is no one who is more “always there, getting tasks done, and never noticed” than Edwin. Edwin first joined the Snohomish Unit in 1997 and was always a frequent responder. Three years later, he joined the Helicopter Rescue Team and is currently the longest serving Rescue Technician and longtime Assistant Coordinator for the team. He also became a member of Everett Mountain Rescue Unit in 2004 and is one of the longest serving members there as well. While those are important contributions in themselves, what is truly special about Edwin is what you do not see. If you try to point out his contributions that you notice, he will always say “I prefer to stay invisible”. He does not need, and especially does not want to receive recognition. He just likes to quietly do his thing without the distraction of being noticed or praised. Some examples of his behind-the-scenes work have touched us all. […]

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Terry Tibke’s Life and SAR Story

March 27, 2021

How do you sum up the life of a man who meant so much to so many? The fact is…you can’t. A man’s life is more than the sum of his accomplishments. The legacy we each leave consists of the lives we have touched and changed along the way. This biography is an ongoing project. Year to year it will change and grow as those of you who knew Terry add stories and memories to those contained here. In this way the memory of Terry Tibke, and all that he meant to Search and Rescue in Snohomish County, will be kept alive. “That Others May Live” The Life of Terry Tibke Originally compiled by Matt Condon Revision September 2003**                 The neighbors must have wondered what was going on when they saw the young boy sleeping out in the rain. He had no tent. A ground cloth, a sleeping bag, and a small tarp were the only things between him and the elements. The neighbors, however, weren’t seeing the result of some cruel punishment, but the beginnings of what would become a very determined young man. One day Terry had announced to his mother that he was going to sleep […]

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Remembering Oso

March 22, 2021

On the 7th Anniversary of the Oso Landslide, we would like to take some time to reflect: The Oso landslide on March 22, 2014 was, and remains, the deadliest single landslide event in United States history, claiming 43 lives in our local community. The mud, soil and rock debris left from the slide covered an area 1,500 ft (5 football fields) long, 4,400 ft (14.7 football fields) wide and deposited debris 30 ft (2 stories) to 70 ft (5 stories) deep. For Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue (SCVSAR), the Oso landslide was one mission, lasting 38 days: 130 SCVSAR personnel made 697 responses for a total of 8,455 volunteer hours: more volunteer hours than we normally would have in an entire year of missions. Our Operations Support Unit (OSU) and our Helicopter Rescue Team (HRT) were activated for the entire 38 days.  They were tasked with supporting the airspace in and nearby the slide area as well as maintaining a hoist-capable helicopter with an EMT and/or Paramedic ready to support the hundreds of onsite workers at the Slide Area. Our K-9 Team, Swiftwater Rescue, 4×4 and Ground Teams also provided significant support throughout the 38-day mission. SCVSAR currently has over 200 active […]

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2020 SCVSAR Fundraising Letter

November 30, 2020

So others may live...

This year, our fundraising letter features the story of a very complicated October rescue! Please click HERE to view or print our the letter, and thank you for your continued support! Would you like to receive our Newsletters and our Annual Fundraising Letter via email? If so, please click HERE.

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SCVSAR Fall 2020 Newsletter

October 12, 2020

Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue

Our newsletter contains our President’s Letter as well as details on recent rescues and more! Please click HERE to view or print our Fall 2020 newsletter, and thank you for your continued support! Would you like to receive our Newsletters and our Annual Fundraising Letter via email? If so, please click HERE.

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President’s Letter

September 14, 2020

Heidi McKeon, Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue President “Three Teens Rescued from Three Fingers Mountain” the headlines read back on August 26-27, 2008. Our son was one of the three teens whose lives were saved. The 20 hours we spent at the SAR Base Camp was our family’s first introduction to these amazing volunteers of Search & Rescue. It was both the worst and best day of our lives. (You can find the whole story on the “Home” page, near the bottom in the “Our Stories” Section.) In the months following the Three Fingers rescue, my husband, my mother and I all joined SCVSAR as members of the Operations Support Unit (OSU). Much of my work on missions has been with Documentation in the Command Vehicle, as well as holding a leadership position within OSU for a number of years and eventually leadership positions with the County Board. As the first woman President of SCVSAR and the first President to come from the Operations Support Unit, my story simply highlights that anyone can meaningfully support this wonderful organization. While we need field qualified personnel to go on missions and be trained for units and teams, such as Everett […]

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What We Want You to Know

September 13, 2020

Leah Hainey, “Snohomish County Volunteer Search & Rescue” Facebook Page Administrator Having a good hiking plan is one of the most important things you should do prior to heading outdoors. At the very least, include what trail you are going to be on and what time you should be back in cell service by. Additional pieces of information we like to have when deployed on a mission are: names and cell phone numbers of all members in your hiking party, the type of car you drove to the trailhead, a list of gear you have packed and the type of boots you were wearing. If you’d really like to go above and beyond, keep a roll of aluminum foil in your vehicle and before departing on the trail, step on it to provide your boot print. Our man trackers can do AMAZING things and this would give them a great head start! Be sure the person you have shared your plan with understands that they will be responsible to call 911 if you miss your check in. This would likely deploy search and rescue to come to your aid. And remember…the second most important part of your plan is sticking […]

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Consider Supporting SCVSAR through Facebook Fundraisers & Donations

September 11, 2020

We have all seen the birthday donations on Facebook, but did you know that you can do one for SCVSAR? These fundraisers are an amazing way to promote and raise money and awareness for SCVSAR. Ways to access this feature for a birthday fundraiser differs whether you’re logged on a desktop or a smart phone. On Snohomish County Volunteer Search & Rescue’s Facebook page itself, it’s very easy to set up a fundraiser, and these are a wonderful means to generate interest and response when you make a contribution yourself and/or offer a matching donation. $1,480 was received by SCVSAR from Facebook Donations between 1/1/2020 and 8/26/2020. Thank you!

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SCVSAR K9 Team Capabilities

September 4, 2020

K9 Team

The K9 Team is a “Specialty Team” within the SCVSAR organizational structure and part of the Special Operations Group. The K9 Team mission is to conduct K9 search operations to locate lost, injured and/or deceased persons whenever and wherever required. There are currently 28 members of the SCVSAR K9 Team from the following SCVSAR Units: EMRU, Alderwood, Snohomish, Marysville, OSU, ESAR.  All members must be in good standing with their units and maintain their Core Competency Requirements at Field level as established by SCVSAR. Members of the K9 Team are either K9 Handlers or K9 Field Support and must complete additional training requirements, including the following: K9 Pet First Aid K9 Fitness Test (5 miles) Performing hider roles Radio reporting (start times, locations, status checks, etc.) Doing Subject Assessments K9 Search Plans Flagging Estimating and reporting location in UTMs The K9 Team trains constantly (when not in quarantine); we train to tough standards; we certify our K9 Teams using 3rd party evaluators. The SCVSAR K9 Team has 3 primary K9 disciplines: Trailing K9 Teams (1 Certified team, 1 team in training): Trailing K9s are trained to find a specific live human and need a scent sample of the subject. Trailing […]

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