KATONAH, N.YIf youve seen the inside of a Katonah-Bedford Hills Ambulance in action, theres a high probability that youve had a bad day. Potentially, it could be one of the worst days of your life.
Unless youre a volunteer, which is what 97 people in the Katonah and Bedford Hills area call themselves each day. From crewmembers, to EMTs, to ambulance drivers, the Katonah-Bedford Hills Volunteer Ambulance Corps is around to assist locals in potentially their biggest time of need.
Ive been in an ambulance. I know what its like to hear the siren going, laying on your back, staring up and having no control over the situation, said volunteer Paul Cantor. Its scary. But to have somebody to hold your hand and show compassion, its invaluable. Thats what we try to do.
While the membership is near the century mark, there are needs that are quite glaring. Most notably the daytime shift, as many volunteers offer their services in the evening after work.
Locals can sign up to be a crewmember, said volunteer Michelle Brier, along with becoming an EMT or an ambulance driver. While the age restriction is 18 and up, the corps is always looking for younger members.
Were also looking for Junior Corps members who are 16 to 18 [years old] who can join and ride with us after school, said Brier. They go through the same training as rest of the members. Its an incredible experience for them.
Even though there are needs more pressing than others, all are welcome.
Anyone, any time is welcome. Well find a spot for you, said Karen L. Moore, a semi-retired psychologist and second lieutenant for the corps. Her father was one of the founders of the ambulance corps in 1963.
Aspiring volunteers can check out the website of the corps, kbhvac.org. Brier knows the experience is worth the time.
The idea that if someone is in an ambulance, its most likely one of the worst days of their life, she said. The fact that we can be there and make it a little bit better for them, is what gets all of us to keep doing it time after time.
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