Frostburg resident recently transferred to Deep Creek Lake
From Staff Reports
CUMBERLAND — Maryland Park Ranger David Best, who recently transferred to Deep Creek Lake State Park, was among several staff members of Point Lookout State Park in St. Mary’s County who were honored with Maryland Park Service Valor Awards for their quick response in aiding a park visitor who suffered a life-threatening laceration.
The incident occurred in August when the victim dropped a razor-sharp fillet knife that lacerated his lower right leg.
Best, a resident of Frostburg, initiated a team response and rapidly located the victim at a campsite in the Hoffman area of the park after park staff received an emergency call for an unknown injury in the park. Park rangers were assisting a tractor-trailer that was stuck in a ditch when the emergency call was received. The only word heard by responders was “man” before the call was lost.
Responders, campground Host Ed Dugans and seasonal ranger Joe Raley found the 79-year-old victim sitting upright and bleeding profusely.
While Dugans and Raley worked to cut off the blood flow, seasonal employee George Gatton arrived with Best and began more extensive first aid. Park Rangers Bill Moffatt and Cliff Puffenberger provided escort for responding Natural Re-sources Police officers and the Ridge Volunteer Rescue Squad. The victim regained full consciousness and was transported to a nearby hospital.
Individuals awarded recently at the Maryland Park Service Employee Field Day at Gunpowder Falls State Park in Baltimore County included Best, Raley, Dugans and Gatton.
Maryland Park Service Superintendent Nita Settina said, “Once again, we see why it is so important that our Maryland Park rangers are trained as first responders. I’m very proud of the rangers’ quick thinking and action, which helped to save a life.”
The Valor Award is presented to individuals who perform an extraordinary action which is attributable to saving a life, attempting to save a life, preventing or attempting to prevent property or revenue loss, or involving public safety.