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CONTRIBUTION · 24th March 2010
Bill Braam
This week marks a twenty year anniversary of a child drowning in an ice covered pond on the city's northern boundary. It is also the anniversary of the beginnings of a world class water rescue team, right here in Terrace.

The RCMP, EHS, Terrace Fire Department, Thornhill Fire Department, Terrace Search and Rescue and Mills Memorial Hospital were all involved that day in an unsuccessful attempt to bring a young boy back to life. And after it was over skills were drawn together and a new water rescue team was in the making.

Rescuing someone from the water in a co-ordinated, specialized way was seen as the focus to be built on. Starting with a shoestring budget and then with gracious donations from persons and service groups the team started to build and was officially set up as a special unit under the Terrace Search and Rescue society umbrella. The remarkable achievement of Terrace SAR's Water Rescue team is a testament to what determination and hard work can bring about.

Communities like Terrace have like minded citizens in them that, if inspired, can achieve things of great significance. Amidst sometimes gloomy predictions of poor futures some persons can still come together and make the community a very good place to be in.

In Terrace's emergency service community there are very gifted individuals with gritty determination, who don't take defeat lightly and strive to improve the quality of life for the rest of us. Some of us out there may assume that all emergency service providers are remunerated for said service. To make the Water Rescue team even more extraordinary is the fact that all service is performed by volunteers, yes, volunteers. A lot of time that is also given up by the members families in order for the member to contribute many thousands of hours that it take to make an entity work.

There are also many other organizations in Terrace that make it such a great place to live and I would like to acknowledge them too. Most of them also began with a few heads drawn together and an idea expanded on. From grassroots beginnings to extraordinary heights, this is what we can achieve if we put our minds to it. As public funds start to become scarce I think even more grassroots beginnings will become necessary and inspirations will come to light. Thank you to the many persons in the past, present and future that will make Terrace and every other community survive and thrive.