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Yosemite Helitack Medic Wins Outstanding Wildfire EMS Of The Year Award

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Yosemite National Park, CA – A Yosemite short-haul rescue medics who has led numerous lifesaving rescue missions received a national honor.

Yosemite National Park officials announced Thursday that the National Wildfire Coordinating Group in Boise, Idaho has awarded Helitack member Heather Wonenberg the organization’s Outstanding Wildfire EMS Individual of the Year Award for 2018.

The honor recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding work, actions, or programs in emergency medical service for the nation’s wildland firefighters.

Officials state that over the past eight years, Wonenberg, who is Yosemite Fire’s Medical Coordinator, has implemented emergency medical programs for both the fire and aviation helicopter units. While continuing to advance her own skills, she is credited with setting up training modules and field-based scenarios to train Yosemite National Park medical personnel on proper methods of patient care during helicopter operations.

Park officials share a photo of the rescue medic standing on Helicopter 551 following a landing in Yosemite Valley’s El Capitan Meadow that can be viewed in the image box. Wonenberg continues to serve as a subject matter expert and critical instructor for the park’s wildland firefighters and cooperating medical personnel.