On Monday, June 28, Tim Skees talked with Edmonson News about the state of the rescue squad and some of the challenges they have faced.
Morale in the rescue squad had been low for quite some time. In April of 2021, the Edmonson County Fiscal Court declined to renew the affiliation agreement with the rescue squad, due to the lack of training that is required and a lack of cooperation on clearing up some issues with the financial statements.
Edmonson County’s Rescue Squad has gone through some hard times but now it looks as if things are getting better. Terry Massy, Edmonson County Emergency Management Director, asked Tim Skees to take over as Commander and to begin the project of getting the rescue squad back up to the standards it needs in order to be effective for the county. In one short month, Tim Skees, along with several volunteers, has managed to repair or replace most of the equipment at the squad house
Skees says that, as of now, there are 16 volunteer members with 130 years of staff command experience total among the members. They have even managed to repair or replace vehicles and acquired a jet ski along with a swift water life raft that can be towed behind the jet ski. They now have a certified diver on the team. Tammy Nugent is the captain of the K-9 division for search and rescue. Austin Vincent is Captain over the Swift Water Division he is also with the Kyrock Fire and Rescue. Herb Popham is certified and heads the Dive and Recovery Divison. Stan Tillman has been made an honorary member. He brings years of experience with rope rescue. Skees stated all members have now reached the goals set by Kentucky Rescue Management so that the rescues squad can reopen. Tim Skees says that everything is ready and he hopes that, soon, the Fiscal Court will sign the agreement to reinstate the Squad.
Edmonson County Treasurer Willhite said, “In the past, the Fiscal Court gave support to the rescue squad by paying for their insurance. Fiscal Court will look at the proposed contracts and work with the rescue squad to do what is best for the citizens of Edmonson County.”
She believes that an agreement can be reached but that it would probably take some time, mainly due to paperwork issues. As of right now, the county has an agreement with the Tri-County Mounted Search and Rescue Squad so the county is able to have help when it is needed.