Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Letter to the Editor ~ Our Fire Chief Rocks!

or, how is our emergency service doing?

Please consider publishing this letter. We know that fate intervened, when Chief Jon showed up. Our adventure could have ended up being a tragedy but for the assistance of your Fire Chief !

Sunday, Feb 6th, it was a beautiful day, we were returning from the McCall festival and were headed home to Meridian. We just had to stop in Garden Valley to deliver a note to a home.

Our Mapquest soon had us lost, and the Van we were in did not have proper traction devices. The hills we encountered were slushy ice in places and we were soon in a skid going sideways in the road, on a blind uphill corner; the Van hit into a snow bank near a tree that was on a precipice and stopped. Being City girls, we thought that someone would come along, adept at getting people out in the snow.

However, after half an hour and no one came, it was time to get serious. We checked our cells.... and sure enough they were almost dead, and no one had brought their car plug! We managed to call AAA, who called John's 24/7 towing. They called us back and said he would be with us in 20 minutes. It was still daylight, so we were excited to get out of the woods before dark.

However, things did not proceed, it was getting dark and the tow truck driver was unable to find us. We kept calling giving road names, and we hiked up the road to give him house numbers. But he was still unable to find us; then on our last call to him, he said he was stuck in the snow and would not be able to get us out. We asked what should we do and the answer was

"I don't know"....

We then were getting worried, so we called 911 and we were told to call a tow truck. We said we did but he was stuck, then we were told that she could dispatch a police officer but he would be coming from Horseshoe Bend and would be at least an hour. While waiting, our cell phones went dead; we did not have flashlights but in desperation, decided to hike to a home that had an outlet we could plug our cell phones into.

We found a home that had Christmas lights on the outside and were able to plug in the phones; after charging for a while, it was almost 1 1/2 hours since our last contact, so we called 911 again. We were told that the police officer was not coming and that 911 would contact Fire and Rescue. We asked the dispatcher, "What should we do if no one comes?" The answer was,

"I don't know".

If you could have seen us, 3 women wet, miserable in body and mind, cold, scared and wrapped in blankets, sitting in the snow in a deserted area not knowing if anyone was coming to help and worried that someone would be hurt coming home sliding into the Van on their way down hill.

We spent over 4 hours on that mountain, by the time that Chief Jon came along !!! He was very kind and considerate, bundled us into his vehicle, and after making sure we were ok, drove down to look at the Van.

He then drove us to the Lodge and called John's 24/7 towing and explained where the vehicle was and offered to help him get it out. However, AAA decided to dispatch another tow truck from Donnelly, so we had at least a 1 1/2 hour wait before the tow truck would arrive.

Jon took us to the firehall to stay warm while we waited, and when the tow truck arrived, he drove us up to the hill. He then assisted the tow truck driver in getting the Van out. If it were not for your hiring of Chief Jon, we would have spent a very uncomfortable night on that cold mountain, and as unprepared as we were, someone might have died; instead, we made it home by 1:15 am and into the arms of our family.

Needless to say, Garden Valley is blessed with a Fire Chief who will go outside just the job. His compassion was obvious and he did everything with our best interest at heart. We understand that his contract will soon be up and would encourage the powers that be to extend his contact. Just think if he cared this much about strangers, how much more will he care for the people who live in the same town !!!!

Thanks for your time and the kindness of your Fire Chief.

Sincerely, Victoria Jones, Sherwood, Oregon
Kimberly Bird, Meridian, Idaho
Lisa, Eagle, Idaho

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, gals, for reinforcing what many of us have known for years. We are so fortunate to have Jon Delvalle on our side!