Saline County Medical Reserve Corps hosts open house

Thursday, June 30, 2011
Sheriff Wally George speaks in high regard of the Saline County Medical Reserve Corp on Thursday evening at the Saline County Fairgrounds.

The first time the Saline County Medical Reserve Corps used the all-terrain vehicle, it was called to assist in a situation where an injured man was more than a mile from the nearest road.

But that was just the first time.

"It saves from carrying someone for miles," said Saline County MRC Coordinator Russ Donnell. "It's worth its weight in gold. We've used it a few times, and it's worth its weight."

The Saline County MRC showcased its whole collection of emergency equipment at an open house at Saline County Fairground on Thursday, June 30.

"We wanted to set it up and show it off, so that in the event that somebody needed these services, they've seen what we have," Donnell said. "When they need a decon-shower or the (Emergency Medical Unit), they know that we have it, and they know that they can call us and get it."

Saline County MRC decontamination shower.

Marshall Police Chief Mike Donnell, Sheriff Wally George, MRC volunteers and spectators gathered to view the all-terrain vehicle, decontamination shower, CPR training equipment, the Air EVAC helicopter from Sedalia and the Emergency Medical Unit.

"When I got here, I looked up and down the road here, and we've used everything here other than the (decontamination shower)," the Police Chief said. "And I hope and pray that we never have to use that piece of equipment."

The Corp is a group of 65 local volunteers that assists first responders.

The Air EVAC, stationed in Sedalia.

When activated the MRC can support the community with both volunteers and equipment.

"When there's an incident, we don't all jump in our pick-ups, turn our little blue lights on and go to it," Russ Donnell said. "You have to activate us, and you have to request our assistance."

In a brief speech, Police Chief Donnell commended the group's dedication and availability to the community.

The MRC coordinator said the Marshall Police Department activates the team more than anyone else.

The Saline County MRC's all-terrain vehicle, equipped with stretcher.

"We've activated them for everything from logistics, to support, to help for search and rescue," the police chief said. "They've never turned us down, and we've called anywhere from six in the morning to nine at night."

The Saline County MRC survives on the donations and grants from local businesses such as Walmart, Monsanto, Cargill, Mid-Missouri Energy, Community Bank of Marshall and Wood Huston Bank.

This equipment and the group of trained volunteers will be available to assist First Responders in times of need.

"Things are getting extreme around the world," George said. "Not only extreme weather but extreme violence, and you never know what's going to happen anymore. I think it's a great, great asset to have the Medical Reserve Corp ready to activate."

Editor's note: This story first appeared Thursday, June 30, on The Marshall Democrat-News website.

Contact Maggie Menderski at mmenderski@marshallnews.com

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