“While all the training and skills we gain and the new friendships we make in SAR are great,” Mark Moeller says, “nothing is as moving as helping to bring closure, good or bad, to the life-changing events of those we serve.”
Because he was interested in rescue operations, years ago Mark joined CERT through the San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District. Seeking more ongoing activity, in 2008 he joined SAR.
For this Detroit-to-East Coast-to-California transplant, CoCo SAR has provided a “meaningful diversion” from his 25-plus-year career in management in the field of computing services.
He says SAR has provided him with excellent training and, in turn, he’s used his knowledge and skills in a variety of ways, from Hasty Squad, Type I, and USAR, to map creation, trailering, and ATVs. He also credits SAR with making him more effective at his day job and more alert in general.
Mark and his wife, Sandi, enjoy tooling around on their Vespas. They are the parents of three boys and a yellow lab, all of whom keep them busy in everything from pulling the trailer for the San Ramon High marching band, to leading Boy Scout troops. Mark has enlisted his youngest son to join him in hiding for the SAR dogs, which he says is a real bonding opportunity.
These words of a 9/11 first responder stick with him: “Remember your best friends: time, distance, and shielding.” That notwithstanding, his favorite piece of SAR wisdom comes from the team’s Coordinator, Rick Kovar: “If it’s wet and not yours, don’t touch it.”
Mark says SAR searches have helped him realize what a difference each of us can make in someone’s life. He is reminded, he says, “how the small things we sometimes sweat need to be let go of in order to live our lives to the fullest.”