BOSSIER PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — The group of Bossier Sheriff’s Office deputies and other first responders from Northwest Louisiana are heading home after helping in south Louisiana during Tropical Storm Barry.
The team of eight Bossier deputies – Lt. Billy Jones, Lt. Dave Faulk, Lt. Sarah Rhodes, Lt. Robert Chavis, Dep. Steve Dooley, Dep. Regan Malmay, Dep. Becky Fohl, and Dep. Kevin Simmons – left Baton Rouge just before 10 a.m. Monday.
They were part of a team on the Louisiana Urban Search and Rescue Task Force Three, which included agencies from BSO, Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office, Shreveport Fire Department, Shreveport Police Department, Bossier City Fire Department, and Monroe Fire Department.
The group arrived in Baton Rouge around noon Friday to help during Tropical Storm Barry and were able to support some rescue missions while there.
On one mission, a contingent of the task force was sent to Franklin to help with rescue missions there Saturday night. They got word of a family who might need rescuing, and the only vehicle for the job during the high waters and the treacherous wind was the Bossier Sheriff’s Office HydraTrek, an amphibious vehicle capable and land and water travel.
The crew made the 10-mile trek to the house of the family, but they decided to stay. They then checked on another family, who also stayed.
Marine Patrol/Rescue Supervisor Lt. Jones said, “The experience was great, and prayers were answered. We were as prepared as we could have been and thankful that we’re fortunate to be able to have the training and resources.”
Lt. Amy Pope and Allison Green, the two BSO dispatchers who supported emergency communications at the EOC in Baton Rouge, also headed back to Bossier Parish this morning.
Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington said, “I am so proud of our team from Bossier who packed up and headed out early Friday morning to help with water rescues and emergency communication efforts during Tropical Storm Barry. Fortunately, the storm was not as bad as it could have been, and we are blessed to have been a part of this mission.”
Sheriff Whittington added, “Rest assured, Bossier Sheriff’s Office and our team of trained deputies stands ready to render aid here in Bossier Parish and to our fellow citizens in Louisiana. It’s what we do.”