EMS Week in Sturgis honors first responders
STURGIS, S.D. — It is National EMS week, a time to recognize and honor first responders across the country, and the Sturgis Fire Department is hosting events all week for the community.
Monday afternoon the department held it’s EMS Week Open House at the fire station. Several agencies were in attendance, including the police department, highway patrol, and the local ambulance group. Organizer and Sturgis ambulance director, Shawn Fischer, says the purpose is to show the community what is available to them in emergency times, as well as a time for networking. Above all, it was a time to recognize the hard work that never stops for first responders.
“I think we all expect an ambulance to be there, we all expect first responders to be there if something happens to us,” said Fischer. “We don’t think about the sacrifices they make day in and day out. I’ve heard, ‘Well, it’s your job.’ Yes it is, but when I became a paramedic, I never dreamed the things that I would see or endure. I wouldn’t change it for the world, but I think it’s time that the communities realize what my ambulance crew does. What they sacrifice.”
Fischer says first responders, especially in rural areas often miss important time with their families to keep the public safe. She says in South Dakota, ambulances are not considered essential, and are not in every town. Before the open house began, the ambulance had to make a trip to Faith for an accident.
“We made a 121-mile trip for a car rollover,” said Fischer. “So that meant, that ambulance is out of service in our area for that long.”
Fischer says it all comes down to dedication, and hopes the community comes out to show their support for first responders during the week.