Search and Rescue: Gaining the Mental Strength to Overcome Formidable Obstacles.
Riding in the vans, sitting with my hands folded in my lap, not sure what to expect, I look ahead into the distance seeing some guy walk up to the van as we come to a halting stop. This guy is dressed in drill instructor like clothes and that’s when my heart slowly sinks. My adrenaline starts to pump as he approaches the van, when all of sudden in the blink of an eye he opens the door, he angrily yells, “5 seconds!!!! You have 5 seconds to get out into formation! What are you waiting for? Get out of the van now!”. The first thought that comes to my mind is, “What have I gotten in to, will I be able to survive these two weeks?” My partners and I panic as we try to exit the van as quickly as possible, stumbling over seats and each other, we run to the area like chickens running aimlessly for their food. We try our best to stand in formation once we arrive at the area; eyes ahead, hearts pumping, brows sweating, this is SARTA. Search and Rescue Training Academy. I remember having a desire to save people’s lives pretty much my entire life, so when I heard about this unit with the Washington County Sheriff Office, I applied instantly. In 2013, I was accepted into this program along with eighteen others after going through the application process which meant going through oral interviews, filling out an application, and PT tests (physical testing). We also had to go through mandatory trainings such as CPR and AED, and gear checks before we were ready to go through the academy. The academy lasted for about two weeks of which I learned
many lifesaving skills such as land navigation, rope techniques, medical skills, search techniques, map and compass, GPS, radio, litter carrying, and many other important skills that is required to becoming a search and rescue member. Now back to the academy. During the two week period of this academy, I would have to say the first two days were...
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