May 24, 2020

Hospital service to mark 25 years> Emergency unit sets `Day in the Park’

PITTSFIELD — Emergency Medical Services at Sebasticook Valley Hospital will celebrate 25 years of service on Saturday, June 24, with a “Day in the Park,” at Pittsfield’s Manson Park. Members of the ambulance staff will serve as hosts for games and activities from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. A hamburger and hot dog barbeque will be offered beginning at noon.

The event was planned as a family affair to allow the staff to share their celebration with members of the community. Conrad Bellfleur, director of the SVH ambulance, hopes residents in the region served by SVH will join them in a day of fun with family and friends.

Activities will include softball, horseshoes, volleyball, an egg roll, sack races, wheelbarrow races, a balloon toss, and more.

The SVH ambulance will be on site and other area ambulance crews have been invited to attend.

The SVH ambulance service officially began Feb. 15, 1971. Mike O’Connor is sole remaining member of the original staff. Bellfleur joined the service one year later. The original service began with a station wagon donated by Pittsfield Motor Sales, the former Ford dealership, in Pittsfield. It was equipped with an emergency light, stretcher, portable oxygen and a first aid kit. It was housed at the former Hubbard’s Garage on North Main Street, last occupied by Valley Graphics. A year later, a Ford van was purchased.

A lot of advanced training and technology has been developed since those early days. Today, full-time staff members Bellfleur and Donna Meservey are trained as paramedics, and O’Connor is at an intermediate level waiting for paramedic training. The staff is supplemented by several on-call Emergency Medical Technicians and 15 volunteers with the emergency response services in area towns that make up the regional system. In 1994, the SVH ambulance answered 1,458 calls.

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