Lyon County Sheriff's Search & Rescue: A Short History
The Lyon County Sheriff's Search and Rescue started out as the North Lyon County Sheriff's Mounted Posse in 1972. Meetings were held in the Fernley Volunteer Fire Department building by the founding members, including Fern & Jerry Roberts, Herb Parker, Elmer Rowen, Darlene & Bill Clegg, and John Bremmer. The original uniforms were the same as the Sheriff''s Department Officers: Tan shirts, brown pants, black belt, boots and jackets. Members were allowed to wear guns. The only real difference was the arm patch, which identified the team as the Sheriff's Posse.
In 1996, the North Lyon County Sheriff's Posse became the Lyon County Sheriff's Search and Rescue unit (LCSSAR).
Over 30 years since the inception of the Sheriff's Posse, the group has increased its membership and experience. Most of the SAR's job is to search for and rescue people in trouble out in the wilderness or people stranded or missing in park and recreation areas, such as Lake Lahontan. Other duties include searching for downed aircraft, mine shaft rescue missions, finding escaped prisoners or locating possible criminals who are evading law enforcement personnel and many other emergency situations.
The LCSSAR has also rescued some animals in trouble, including a dog who fell down a mine shaft and a young fawn trapped in the Truckee-Carson Irrigation Canal but was to weak to get out by herself.
|Mule deer fawn rescued from canal
|Sarah shared pasture with a long-haired angora goat named Murphy and she loved to eat apples.
The fawn, a baby mule deer named Sarah, stayed with a SAR volunteer for several months until she was old enough to venture out on her own.
In the 1980s, the Posse trained with the Sheriff's Department and learned basic emergency medicine, basic to intermediate rappelling for mountain and mine shaft rescues and how – and when – to use their weapons in a given situation.
In the 1990s, special training and new equipment helped prepare members for more emergency rescue situations. The first SAR "bus" contained numerous radios, video cameras, TV equipment and a computer. Video cameras allowed the unit to explore mine shaft openings before sending in personnel and helped reduce the risk to rescuers by detailing the condition of the shaft.
One emergency call to the SAR claimed that a man's leg was seen at the bottom of a fairly deep, possibly unstable mine shaft, but when the SAR arrived and dangled the video camera down the shaft on a rope, the "leg" turned out to be a rotting timber and the bottom of the shaft that was full of water. The timely video negated the need for a possibly dangerous rescue attempt.
Members are POST certified man trackers, proficient in map and compass reading and team players. Specialty units include Ropes, ATV, Boats and Swift Water Rescue.
The LCSSAR has other duties to the community including flood evacuations, security for events, races and shows, and backing up the Lake Lahontan Park Rangers during holiday weekends and celebrations.
Other training sessions for the SAR team include helicopter air operations, wilderness medicine, knot tying, E.L.T., protecting crime scenes and emergency medical training, like First Responder or EMT certifications.
Becoming a member of the LCSSAR
Please Contact Us (<— click) if you are interested in joing our organization.