An In-depth Look at the CERT/ARES Volunteers for the Lincoln Celebration!

If you were at the Lincoln 150th Anniversary Celebration/4th of July weekend event or at the Warsaw Fireworks, you no doubt saw some of Benton County’s fine volunteers in action! The Benton County, MO Community Emergency Response Team (BC MO CERT) and Benton County, MO Amateur Radio Emergency Service (BC ARES) volunteers were out assisting BC MO EM Deputy Director Samantha Henley (KE0LMY) with traffic control, parking, parade route control, command post duty, and more!

We would like to thank the following volunteers for their service over the past week: Kellee Bell (KM7BEL), John Bell (KI7CMV), Stephen Swerline Sr. (KF6DRH), Renee Cason (KE0LMZ), Nick Camirand (KE0NIL), Roger Henley (KD0WXT), Kentton Harris, Judy Salyer, and Alex Cason.

Most members of these groups are cross-trained so they are versatile when responding to a request for help from the cities in Benton County. BC ARES members hold FCC licenses to speak on amateur radio bands and train as CERTs so they can assist with the command post, traffic control, and more. CERTs are encouraged to consider gaining their amateur radio licenses so they can not only assist with communications but it also allows them to use the amateur radio frequencies and clears room on GMRS and county channels for first responders to use!

There were numerous traffic control points and parking points which the Lincoln Police Department utilized CERT/ARES volunteers to maintain. You may have seen them as you headed down the road between Casey’s and Bullseye. They provided directions to the parking area and where different events were being held. They attended the parking area and kept things moving in an organized manner. They were positioned along the parade route to keep traffic from interfering with the parade. They maintained a joint command post with the Lincoln PD, utilizing the county’s new Emergency Communications trailer, which also provided much needed air conditioning, ice water, snacks and more to the police and volunteers working throughout the hottest hours of the days.

MORE PHOTOS COMING SOON!

We’d like to thank a couple of visitors to the festivities, as well. Tim brought Sam Henley ice water during a long stretch of traffic control on Saturday. Thank you, Tim! An anonymous young woman also delivered a wonderful cherry limeade slushie to Sam on Saturday afternoon! Thank you so much! It was a welcome, wonderful treat! Our volunteers appreciate how caring the great residents/visitors were to them!

As we mentioned on our Facebook page, the mayor of Lincoln, chief of police, county treasurer, police officers, parade participants, event attendees and more were extremely complimentary of our volunteers and raved about their efficiency and efforts! What a fantastic way to give back to the community we serve!

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer for the BC MO CERT or BC ARES, you can contact us for information.

This month’s free CERT classes begin tonight at 6 pm at Lincoln High School (101 Lamine St.) and take place every Monday and Thursday during July. At the end of the month, we will have great new volunteers to add to our growing CERT family!

Once again, we want to thank the volunteers of the BC MO CERT and BC ARES for their fantastic work!