By Mary O’KEEFE
On Saturday, Crescenta Valley Park was crowded with folks eager to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Montrose Search and Rescue (MSAR) team. MSAR team members are volunteers who are available 24/7 to respond to lost hikers, traffic collisions, fire, flood and everything in between.
Several dignitaries were part of the day’s festivities including Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger who shared the celebration of 75 years of service to the community. Barger said as a hiker she advised everyone who present who hikes to “stay on the trail.”
“These [MSAR members] are people who have jobs,” Barger said. “They are medical professionals and they work in offices but they are doing this just to give back to the community.”
State Senator Anthony Portantino also recognized the MSAR and presented a proclamation from the California State Senate. Mary Hovagimian, representative for Congressman Adam Schiff, read from a proclamation the congressman read into the U.S. congressional record on Sept. 13 honoring MSAR.
“I rise today to honor the Montrose Search and Rescue team in Montrose, California upon its 75th anniversary,” Hovagimian read.
The proclamation shared the history of MSAR and how it is one of the most active of the eight search and rescue teams affiliated with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Dept.
“These volunteer heroes, who come from a variety of professions, serve their community without asking for anything in exchange. They search through rubble, scale cliff sides and brave surging waters to save lives. Their selfless dedications and invaluable service provide a model for all of us and deserve recognition,” Hovagimian read.
Saturday’s event was planned by MSAR members Robert Sheedy and Cindy England.
“We are just so pleased with the turnout and the support of the community, the first responders and our vendors,” said England. “We’re just so pleased.”
“We didn’t know what to expect,” added Sheedy. “We’re so grateful to the many people, like Steve Pierce, who helped us put this together. We weren’t sure how many people would show up but we’re delighted with the results.”
The last big event – commemorating the team’s 70th anniversary – was held five years ago at Newcomb’s Ranch in Angeles National Forest; however, the pair said they might not wait another five years to host another celebration.
“Maybe we’ll have another event next year,” Sheedy said.
Team members pay for their own uniforms and equipment. For those who were not able to attend the celebration at CV Park but would still like to support MSAR, visit montrosesar.org and click the Donate button. To send a check, make it payable to Montrose SAR and mail it to P.O. Box 404, Montrose, California 91020.
Photos by Robin GOLDSWORTHY, Mary O’KEEFE, Bob PRAUN and Charly SHELTON
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Support Group
LA County Supervisor Kathryn Barger, Fifth District
Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1614
American Legion Post 288
Crescenta Valley Chamber of Commerce
USC Verdugo Hills Hospital
Moose Lodge #641
Crescenta Valley Town Council President Harry Leon
Starbucks in Montrose
Starbucks in La Cañada
Coffee Bean in Montrose
LA County Parks and Recreation
History Society of Crescenta Valley
Thank you for the support of:
Global Temp Services (Washrooms)
Vertex Waste Management (Trash bins/containers)
Early Rodders and Road Kings (classic cars)
Tony Sardo Band
CV Jazz Band