Coquitlam SAR was recently notified that Roland Webb, our friend and team mate who was tragically killed in a car accident earlier this year, has been chosen to receive the Exemplary Service Award of the National Search and Rescue Program (NSP) Awards of Excellence.
Rollie was a SAR member for 21 years with four different SAR groups in BC, a Paramedic with the BC Ambulance Service, and was a recognized leader in both his professional and volunteer positions. In fact, we would go so far as to say that he saw no difference between the two callings, and put as much enthusiasm and effort into Search and Rescue as he did into his paid career.
Most of our current team of SAR members was trained in one way or another by Rollie, and his influence on the team and our processes continues to this day as he established standards and processes that we continue to use. As well as teaching first aid and Ground SAR, Rollie himself was a team leader, mountain rescue member, and part of our new long line helicopter rescue team. In addition to SAR members, Rollie instructed members of the Canadian Forces SAR Techs for their paramedic training.
According to the National Search and Rescue Secretariat guidelines, the Award of Excellence for Exemplary Service “recognizes special and outstanding service to search and rescue provided by an individual or organization, usually over a significant period of time, or during a critical event of widespread or national and/or international significance.” The award is adjudicated from a national pool of nominees, and is bestowed annually at the SARScene conference.
Rollie was the guy who took the time to make sure people were recognized for their accomplishments. He established a formal set of service awards given out every year, and was the driving force behind successfully nominating another member of Coquitlam SAR, Ian Cunnings in 2006 . It is only fitting them that we nominated him for the same award, and heartbreaking that he is not here to receive it himself.
Rollie you continue to have a great effect on our team, and inspiring us to be better. We wish you could have received this award in person.