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More than a photo: Coquitlam Search and Rescue recognized for recent successful, busy services

National Volunteer Week in late April tipped its hat to several local organizations in B.C.
Coquitlam Search and Rescue volunteers conduct practices involving backcountry stretcher rescues. This photo was the runner-up in a B.C. photo contest for National Volunteer Week.

In the above photo, you see volunteers hard at work.

Coquitlam Search and Rescue (CQSAR) is seen conducting backcountry stretcher rescues, one of many tasks and practices that take place in a given month, while also remaining on high alert whenever a person is in need of help.

The team has notably been busy in the last few weeks and their efforts, as well as those throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, were recently recognized by National Volunteer Week

The above photo was the runner-up in a photo contest run by Volunteer BC in acknowledging the energy put in by local residents.

"This winning [CQSAR] photo celebrates the dedication, the impact of volunteers and how they lift our communities, especially during these challenging times,” said Volunteer BC Program Director Lorelynn Hart in a release sent to Tri-City News.

CQSAR was the only search and rescue team acknowledged in the contest.

This year, National Volunteer Week was formally recognized in the province from April 18-24, 2021.

In the month of May, however, CQSAR was kept busy in aiding other search parties for missing people, as well as enlisting 50 volunteers for the Victoria Day long weekend.

Mobilized members recovered after joining the tragic search for missing UBC professor Sinikka Elliott, who was found deceased on Salt Spring Island in a news release on May 15.

That same day, a woman was rescued from Eagle Mountain when she fell off her mountain bike and dislocated her shoulder.

Then, on the Sunday (May 16), CQSAR search manager Bob Heatherington told Tri-City News the 30-year-old was found by members who used E-bikes to reach her at the junction of Manhandler and Three Little Pigs trails.

Volunteers also helped in the search for a missing 86-year-old man who had left his family vehicle while shopping at Princess Auto on King Edward Street.

He was eventually found by RCMP in some bushes off Highway 1 in Coquitlam.

Regardless of where its next call may lead, CQSAR continues to urge residents to be prepared when venturing out into regional mountains or trails.

Heatherington also hopes people will do thorough research and leave a trip plan with a responsible person before heading out into the backcountry, recommending everyone to visit Adventure Smart for more details.

For more information about Coquitlam Search and Rescue, you’re encouraged to visit its website or Facebook page.

- with files from Diane Strandberg, Tri-City News