Search and Rescue Manager at Sparwood SAR, Ed Ehrler is a Public Safety Lifeline volunteer award winner in 2020. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Sparwood’s Ed Ehrler wins Public Safety Lifeline award

Ehrler has been volunteering with Sparwood SAR for 15 years

Sparwood’s very own Ed Ehrler has been recognized by the province for his exceptional contributions to emergency and disaster response efforts in B.C.

Ehrler received the Public Safety Lifeline volunteer award for Search and Rescue along with another five other recipients.

Ehrler, who is the Search and Rescue manager with Sparwood Search and Rescue (SAR) said that the most rewarding part of the work “is just helping people in general.”

“It’s a huge part of my life, and I don’t know what I’d be doing without it,” he said.

Ehrler has been with Sparwood SAR for 15 years, and estimated the number of call-outs he’d been a part of was approaching 100, with one that stands out being the safe rescue of a three-year-old girl that had wandered away from her family’s home in 2006.

“I had only been in SAR for a year and a half…I was on one of the search teams, and ended up walking down this trail into this horse pasture a little ways away from the trailer court, and I go through this gate and I look and there’s some horses there, and lo and behold just sitting there right next to the horses just playing with them was this little three-year-old girl.

“It was the most elating thing just finding her alive and well. I carried her back, she fell asleep on my shoulder, it was the most amazing thing. That stuck with me.”

Ehrler has been a big part of getting the Sparwood SAR fully equipped and ready to take on any challenge, which is lucky because he explained that when he started the team could get one or two calls a year – and now they could get up to 20.

“Search and Rescue as a whole has evolved in the past 15 years, and it’s really great to be a part of that.”

“I just love volunteering and helping out,” he said.

Ehrler thanked his Search and Rescue colleagues at Sparwood SAR, saying that the dedicated volunteers were integral to the safety of the community.

READ MORE: Local search and rescue teams rescue injured bikers
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