It all started with a demonstrated need and an idea to preserve the continuity
of delivery of pre hospital emergent care in the Morrisville-Smithfield
community in January 1996. A group of concerned citizens lead by Margaret
Brody and Jeff Mitchell presented what they thought would be a good solution
to the Village Board meeting in February 1996.
Not only did they intend to start a rescue squad but they already had a list of 35 people who had pledge their help. The rescue squad was to be named SEVAC and a Board of Directors soon emerged to take on the planning and administrative duties. The people involved as the founding Board of Directors included Paul Schiffer, Esther Way, Anthony Zazzara, Karen Gay, Elaine Gray, Sue Polisse, and James McFarland.
Many events soon followed in rapid successions with the dedicated help of many to make this dream a reality. The work had begun on the very important Certificate of Need with Margaret Brody and Terri Gallerani as the main players.
Clarence Holbert fronted us with a $10,000.00 promise so that our financial viability could be assured to qualify for the Certificate of Need. The Village of Morrisville leased the ambulance to us for the sum of one dollar and the Fire Department sold us the equipment to start. Clarence Holbert again stepped up to buy our first radio so that the squad could communicate with the hospitals that serve our area.
The Village donated a place in the Village Barn for the ambulance and Jim Dutcher donated a trailer to house the crew. With the ambulance and crew ready, we accomplished our first call on August 1, 1996.
Our first crew composed of Fred Brooks, Marty Eiholzer, Jeff Mitchell and Kathy Parker. The following winter was quite cold and with the help of a donated space heater, the crews were kept in meager comfort. The drugs were carried in the ambulance and had to be kept in a refrigerator so that they would not freeze. The rescue squad dreamed if a place of its own.
We soon outgrew the crew facilities and seriously set about to build a
place to call our own. A fund drive was undertaken and letters were sent
out by Connie Shepard, Margaret Brody and Catherine Holbert to nearly everyone
in the community explaining our plight and asking for help. The response
was really quite heartening. We even secured a $25,000.00 grant thanks
to Assemblyman Bill Magee and our Paul Shiffer and William Conole and many
others who worked on the application to further our cause. We became "Landed
Gentry" as a result of a generous gift of land from Clarence Holbert.
Our SEVAC barn was becoming a reality! Many of our members and members of the community contributed their time and talents to finish the interior of our "pole barn".
After one of the many more application processes, we were granted our Certificate if Occupancy and moved into our brand new home.
This was not to be the end of our good fortune. We had initially thought
that it would be feasible to buy a new ambulance in 2004 but again due
to the generosity of those in the community and involved with the application
process, especially William Conole and William Kablack and State Senator,
Nancy Lorraine Hoffman, a new ambulance was procured THREE YEARS ahead
of what thought was initially feasible.
Because of careful fiscal management and with the proposed help of our state benefactors, believe it or not, we plan to be buying a replacement ambulance in the very near future.
We have certainly come a long way over the span of the last ten years and Margaret Brody is still a crew member as well as a Board member and our commitment in kind to our service to our community was not wavered. It would be impossible to name each and every person who has helped us along the way, but we at SEVAC know who you are, remember you with fondness and are certainly in our debt.