by Bob Keith

She called a friend and a neighbor for help. She was disoriented and thought she may have had a stroke. After arriving at her home, and even though there appeared to no apparent health issues, the locals recommended calling 911. Call placed and assessed by the county emergency call center personnel. Emergency pagers activated.

Here are Lake Lure’s finest from left to right: Andy Greenway (Reserve Officer), Alan Greene (now retired) Lee Edwards(Reserve Officer), Glen Gittens (Sergeant), Bryan Toney (Police Officer), Sean Humphries (Police Chief), Kat Canant (Administrative Assistant), Aaron Collins (Corporal), Byron Haynes (Reserve Officer), Charlie Devinney (Reserve Officer), Herbie Cooper (no longer with the LLPD), Carl Umphlett (Sergeant). Not shown are Police Officers Bailey Worley, Carlos Sanchez, and Kortney Burrell.

Within minutes, medical first responders from Fairfield Mountains and Lake Lure Fire Departments were on scene. Shortly thereafter Lake Lure Police and a County EMS Ambulance and personnel arrived. Vitals were taken. There was elevated blood pressure but all other signs were normal. Stroke protocols were applied and found a stroke condition most likely negative. As the patient was still somewhat confused and unable to recall certain afternoon events, EMS recommended a trip to the hospital for more intense analyses.

The scene depicted above is an almost a daily occurrence in the Gorge. Whether there’s a tree down blocking a road, a medical emergency similar to the one described above, a fire or merely a fire alarm or an accident on the roads or lake, there is a team of responders ready to assist in solving the problem. The process is quiet and efficient and sometimes goes unnoticed and taken for granted. But we are truly blessed. 

The Lake Lure Police Department is led by Chief Sean Humphries. He manages a well-trained and capable force shown in the enclosed picture – super protectors of our area.

Our four fire departments work together cohesively and are led by Lake Lure FD Chief Dustin Waycaster, Fairfield Mountains FD Chief Gary Wilson, Bills Creek FD Chief Jimmy Howell and Chimney Rock FD Chief Chris Melton. Important to note, that in addition to a handful of paid firefighters, the total force includes approximately 80 volunteers.

County EMS is always on call and available as the need arises to support emergencies.

Finally, I would like to make you aware of a special event coming up. The Town of Lake Lure will display fireworks on September 7th at dusk downtown in Morse Park not only to celebrate Labor Day but to honor all those deemed to be “essential” workers. We want to salute, recognize and thank all those community services, Police, Fire, EMS, first responders and health care workers, who endeavor to keep all of us safe and secure especially as we experience and live through the onerous coronavirus pandemic. And let us not forget those who work in our tourist sector, restaurants and motels, and especially those who serve and support us at Ingles. High fives to all!

Come out and enjoy the fireworks, but most importantly, stay healthy, happy and safe!