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Gut Bucket

Gut Bucket

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Published by Ronald Feldhauser
True events in Emergency Services by Hoss Feldhauser
True events in Emergency Services by Hoss Feldhauser

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Published by: Ronald Feldhauser on Jul 20, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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02/12/2013

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The “Gut Bucket
By Hoss Feldhauser This is a true accounting of some of the events that I experiencedwhile working on the Rescue Squad for 33 years. Some of it is raw andmay offend some readers. But in the times of emergency life cansometimes be raw. I have avoided using descriptions that mightidentify patients; but all stories are accurate to the best of myrecollection. This is a draft version and you will note grammar errors and less thanperfect writing in some places, it is something I am working on. Yourcomments would be appreciated.
Section A- The “Night From Hell”
Chapter I. The OverdoseI can’t start this story out penning the line … it was a dark and stormy night;simply, because it wasn’t. In fact, the night was like most mid-February nights,freezing cold and there were small piles of snow on the ground leftover from atypical short-lived Northern Virginia winter storm that had passed through ourarea the week before. The landscape appeared brighter than it really was due tothe half-moon shinning on this clear, cloudless night and the snow cover was
 
reflecting the glare of the moon.I was on ambulance duty, nothing unusual about that as I had been active inthe local volunteer fire departments rescue squad for over 33 years. Spanningthose years the Friday night ambulance crew comprised of many different folks,but the foundation of this rescue squad call team was anchored by my regularpartner, Hal Shaner, myself, and for many of those years we were fortunate tohave a steady driver, Junior Kisner. The rest of our crew members came and went,most making an positive, helpful impact on the lives of those they came incontact with; and a few that served with somewhat less distinction. I can proudlysay that many of the young “new bloods” that Hal and I introduced to the world of emergency services grew on to do well in the “business” of saving lives. Somewent into the trade professionally and others faded away after enriching boththeir own lives and the local society in general.Hal, Junior, and I have shared many remarkable adventures while on thesquad; some were great fun, some were very rewarding experiences, andregretfully there were a few events that we weren’t happy participants. On thepositive side of the equation was the fact that those “unfortunate” adventures arelimited in number. One of the most rewarding reflections I have is the knowledgethat there are people alive today as a direct result of our lifesaving efforts. Wedidn’t do it alone, we performed as a part of the team of dedicated Cardiac Technicians that served in our community.One of the reasons our call team stood out was that we made an effort to pass onthe benefits of our experiences to the newer members of the Department. TheFriday night crew was a very popular team to be on because Hal, Junior and Iworked hard at providing “real life” training for our teammates.One method of training that proved to be very effective was in the form of friendlygame I developed for the new guys. I would make a list of 10 items that could befound on the “first due” ambulance and offered the challenge to identify everyitem on my list. One condition of the contest was that anything on my list was tobe a piece of equipment that we did really use. The person had to be able tolocate it, identify it by the name we used to refer to that item, and know what wasit’s intended use. To make this game “sporting” I would place a wager with the
 
person; if they found all 10 things on the list that I would buy them a soda and if they failed to find any of the 10 items they would buy me a soda. I would mention,as a teaser, that I liked ginger ale or RC Cola or some other particular flavor as ahint that I didn’t think they could do it. Almost all the time I would be awarded thesoda the first Friday night of the contest. I would “ham it up” a bit by doing a littlebragging on how refreshing the drink tasted. That flaunting would serve asincentive to the contestant; they would work hard at learning where everythingwas on the unit so that I would have to buy them a soft drink on the followingFriday. Often that’s just what would happen. I didn’t mind buying that soda at allas I figured it was a good investment in advancing the value of our new teammember. When someone first started on our team they would initially serve as a“gofer”, as in go for this – go for that, while they gained experience and learnedhow to work with the patients. There is one night of “on call” that sticks out over the others because Ibelieve that it demonstrates just about the full range of human drama andemotions that we are often exposed to while working with the squad. Life saved,life lost, humor, immense tragedy, sex, beauty, ugliness, and all classes of passions were represented. As well, there were visible examples of thecooperation and inter-working of the emergency medical environs. Most of all theability of the people involved to provide emergency care with compassion, all thewhile maintaining their sense of humor, is portrayed within these circumstances. The composition of the call team was a little unusual because Hal was not with uson this fateful night, but Junior Kisner was on duty and he was a regular on theFriday night team for over 15 years. Another member of our crew that nigh standsout as he was the brother of one of our Department members, but not a memberof the Department. He had committed some minor foul with the law and had beensentenced to “community service” by the judge. As events unfolded this youngman proved to be a hard worker “paying his debt” in earnest by cleaning uparound the station. After a couple of Friday nights observing the workings of theDepartment he expressed some interest in going on a call with us to see first handwhat it was like “in the field”; so I signed him up. That is I had him register in ourride-a-long book in order to certify that he would hold all confidences to which he

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