Bozeman Daily Chronicle
I would like to express my appreciation for several ordinary people who do extraordinary things for our community: our 911 dispatchers. These everyday heroes answer thousands of calls every year from you and your neighbors in Gallatin County. Our 911 dispatchers have given instructions for CPR over the phone to a distraught mother whose child stopped breathing, and the very next minute have changed gears to find assistance for a parking complaint. They are the center of a variety of sources of assistance sending the appropriate help as soon as possible.
This week is Telecommunicator Week when we have the chance to recognize the dispatchers in our community who team up to answer over 100,000 calls every year here in Gallatin County. They send law enforcement, fire, or medical to help thousands of people — people who may very well be going through the worst experience of their lives. Dispatchers may appear to be just like everyone else, but on the inside they are different. They don’t just come to work every day in order to pick up a paycheck. They arrive at work knowing that next phone call could be the difference between life and death or could only be the chance to make someone’s day a little bit easier.
I am lucky. I get to thank them in person every day. This week I want our community to know how special they are. They are special because when you call and hear a dispatcher answer “911, what is the address of your emergency” you know that dispatcher’s voice means that help is on the way. You know that voice is one of hope.
Kerry O’Connell Director Gallatin County 911 Communications Bozeman