UNO 2014 – 29 new Type II Academy graduates and the CoCoSAR 100

- by John Banuelos

“Give your all to meIMG_1096
I'll give my all to you”

These words come a John Legend song.  How do these words connect to the 2014 Type II Academy? Well, read on.

In a tradition that reaches back to the beginning of CoCoSAR there has always been an Unexpected Night Out or UNO. Many generations of CoCoSAR Team members have gone through their UNO. Everyone remembers and has a special tale to tell about their night out.

On October 18 and 19, for 36 plus hours 29 student were run through stations of SAR skill sets, did endless miles of hiking, conducted multiple mocks searches all through the night into the wee hours of the next day, caught a few hours of sleep, if at all, and then capped off the UNO experience with a final rescue scenario in the post dawn hours. All 29 students persevered. They had dirty faces with smiles. All felt the relief of success as we all ate our breakfast under the old oak tree.

The Class of 2014 gave their all to us. And we of the CoCoSAR One Hundred gave our all to them.

These 29 will merge into the ranks of the CoCoSAR Two Hundred as ground pounders. I hope they join the ranks of the CoCoSAR One Hundred in support of the next generation of students that will attend the next Academies and will go through their own UNO in 2015.

As to the CoCoSAR One Hundred, they represent the ongoing spirit of giving their all. It is with great pride that I present the list of names for the 2014 CoCoSAR One Hundred. There were 111 contributors to the success of this year’s Academies and UNO.

Apfel, Judith Hirata, Alan Perez, Edward
Banuelos, John Hirata, Tami Piercy, Dana
Bates, Tom Hirata, Tori Plam, Pierce
Blue, Diane Hoffman, Nancy Poindexter, Roger
Borquez, Leslie Hubbard, Laura Retta, Chris
Boyce, Michael Hubinger, John Riggs, Casey
Buluran, Kristl Hunter, Autumn Riggs, Micheal
Carmody, Laura Huntington, Ron Rodrigues, Itales
Clark, Jim Israel, Joshua Rogers-Engle, Natane
Clark, Kevin Jones, Paul Rogers, Todd
Clymer, Laury Kalan, Jon Rutherford, Pamela
Coelho, Chris Kavanagh, Don Schimek, Brad
Comly, Andy Kovar, Rick Sembrat, Mark
Corum, Jamie Kwan, Vincent Shargel, Matt
Cossu, David Lamb, Steve Shih, Larry
Coyne, Dan Lane, Dennis Soo, Cameron
Csepely, Andreas Langley, Claudia Stein, Roger
Cummings, Michael Lynch, Darren Stinson, Ralf
Cunningham, Katelynn Mapel, Brian Sutter, John
Curran, Dawn Mathews, Alan Thomas, Lauren
Dees, Jeremiah McGraw, Lisa Tiernan, Jeff
Dodson, Patrick McMillan, Michael Tseung, Kerrie
Eichinger, Walter Medearis, Robert Venturino, John
Farasati, Reza Miller, Sheryl Volga, Michelle
Field, Cynthia Molascon, Ed Walker, Patrick
Filippoff, Steven Moschetti, Frank Walley, Bryan
Fok, Eric Moss, Paul Walton, Claire
Fong, Larry Murphy, Tim Webber, Steve
Franks, Randy Murray, Paul West, Paul
Garcia, Linda Murray, Scott White, Howard
Gaughen, Kathy Murray, Wilma Whiting, Mark
Gay, Jim Najarian, Rick Wilfer, Mark
Giberti, Kevin Neidhardt, Richard Witul, Janice
Gore, Natalie Nichols, Chris Wright, Jennifer
Harrison, Robert Novak, Phil Yee, Laishan
He, Henry Pangilinan, Luigi Young, Chris
Healy, Paul Peabody, Jack Zensius, Natalie

A Day in the Life of a Type 1 Rookie

By Paul Healypaul healy

I have been on the CoCo SAR team since 2010, but didn’t become a Type 1 member until this August.

Below are some Type 1 rookie musings from the second Type 1 search I attended, which was on October 5. With me were John Banuelos, Natalie Zensius, Chris Coelho and Mark Whiting.

(Some sanitized four-letter words here replace the ones actually in my head.)

1930 on Sunday: Our company has finally gone and now it’s time for some recliner and TV-watching. I’m exhausted; I feel too old for three-day weekends with the boys. Ten minutes later, my cell phone goes off and I see “000 000 0000” on the screen. Oh, crap!

The remote voice tells me: “15-year-old hunter missing in Mendocino County, due back at 1000.

CP at 0900 Grizzly Flats Hwy 162 and M-1. Type 1 for yes, 2 for no.”

Hmm, all right, what’s on the agenda for tomorrow? My boss may be pissed, but my work can wait. I need to be at OES, ready to leave at 0300; need to go through my 24-hour pack and pull and prep for 72. Damn, I need to get to bed.

0200: The alarm goes off.

0255: I arrive at OES.

Oh crap!  I’m late; they are packed and ready; 0300 means leave not meet.

0310: We leave OES. It’s a six-hour ride and I’m wondering where we’re going. Coehlo? Never heard of it.

0700:  The sun is rising over the valley, 20 miles inland from Hwy 101 and we have 17 more miles on this gravel ridge road to the top.

0830: After a scary journey, we reach our destination at CP.

0835: Operations is ready for us with our assignments.

Let’s get moving!

0845: Briefing. We’re told the young man was to be hunting in this area. The place last seen (PLS) is shown to us on the map. We get his picture; the kid is a TV “Survivalist” fan and we’re told to expect him to travel down a drainage to the river. Our assignment is to search the Thatcher Creek drainage as far as possible, returning at 1600. One of our team was to work with the CARDA handler up stream while the rest of us headed down stream. Our best route to our search area is to travel on fire roads to meet up with ATVs for further travel.

We get our maps and are sent off with a “Good luck.”

0945: We call CP as we get stopped–the fire road we’ve been traveling on is no longer a road. There are four concrete/metal barriers across a washed-out trail.

0950: We communicate with the ATV team via radio to let them know our position in relationship to theirs.

0955: CP tells us that attempts to come pick us up by ATV will not work as they have barriers at their end, too.

1010: CP tells us to meet the helicopter at Grizzly Camp for transport.

1020: We arrive at Grizzly Flat and look for parking.

Yikes is that the family? Can’t park here … how about along the road over there?

1100: We board the Department of Fish and Wildlife’s helicopter.

Damn nice ride, what a view. Hope all the pot growers don’t think we are searching for them and start shooting.

1115: We start our search assignment. Have some snacks. Orient map; start tracks.

Damn, comms won’t work in this part of canyon.

“Let’s go. Paul you got right, Natalie center, I’ll get the left,” Chris says.

1125: Oh crap, was that a print I just stepped on? Good, here is another one … could these be his?

“Chris, Nat, check this out. Let’s get Baneulos before he heads upstream. There are more down here.” CP wants us to stay with the original plan, but keep aware of more prints if they continue in our search area.

1338: We hear the news: Subject found, all teams return to CP; we make our way back to the landing zone to await our helicopter ride out.

1415: Full barbecue, smiles all around.

1436: Getting ready to head home when we see a couple of vans ahead. The people inside are all waving and smiling.

Of course, it must be the family. That’s why we do this.

2046: Back at OES. Clean up and put all the gear away. Sign out and in the car; home in 25…

Class of 2014

By John BanuelosIMG_0195

31 new names will be added to the roster of CoCoSAR.
Every year, CoCoSAR garners the attention of volunteers who wish to contribute to their community. And every September, CoCoSAR conducts a Type 3 Academy to add to the ranks of the “200,” the number of volunteers maintained as a search force. On September 2, 31 individuals (24 adults with seven Cadets) started their introduction to search and rescue.

Each member gave up aspects of his/her life to attend 10 SAR Academy nights, plus gave up one full weekend to be trained in Urban Search and Rescue Type 4 tactics and hiked miles as part of a series of navigation exercises. None complained, all stayed on task, and throughout the entire process they tried to absorb every ounce of information that was offered. On October 6, they will attend one last night and will leave as full Type 3 members of CoCoSAR.

But wait! They are not done. On October 7, the Type 2 Academy will begin. Twenty-nine of the 31 new members will be there. We start with the Type 2 fitness hike and will end with the Unexpected Night Out (UNO) on October 19. Special note: Once again, the “CoCoSAR 100” has rallied.

The term “CoCoSAR 100” refers to those members that assist the Academy staff with the Type 3 and 2 Academy events.
Since the inception of the term, the “100” has never disappointed. To date, 88 individual members have instructed, proctored, coached, or have done any task needed to assist at an Academy night or weekend event. The call goes out and the “100” shows up in force.

A few remarkable members have shown up at every event. They did so because they wished to help. On average, each of these 88 members have assisted at least three times over the course of the Type 3 Academy. As we progress on through UNO, the final number will continue to grow. And as before, 100-plus members will have stood the watch over the next generation of CoCoSAR members.

Servio in comitatu heroes
I serve in the company of heroes.