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Hurricane Katrina Dispatchers

It was time again to recognize a telecommunicator who deserves recognition for they’re above and beyond service to the public. The Larry Lindsey Award given by the Mississippi Chapter of the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials recognizes those who strive for greater service as a telecommunicator. The award acknowledges exemplary professional conduct, ability, and overall contribution to the field of telecommunications. The award was created in honor of Larry Lindsey, a founding member of the Mississippi Chapter of the Association Of Public Safety Communications Officials International (APCO). Lindsey was also a major force behind the creation of the State of Mississippi Board Of Emergency Telecommunications Standards And Training (BETST), the regulatory agency that certifies emergency telecommunicator in the state and governs their ongoing education and growth.

This year 2006 the APCO-MS Chapter has several telecommunicator that have gone above and beyond in their field of public safety. Among these were our public safety professionals, many of whom stayed on duty saving lives, while everything they owned, was being destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. Many worked long hours while knowing that they had lost all but the clothes on their backs. They made an incredible sacrifice, to come to work not knowing what the outcome of the hurricane would be.

Hurricane Katrina made landfall on August 29, 2005 with top sustained winds of about 125 mph. During the path of the storm, Hurricane Katrina managed to gain strength and climb to a Category 5 hurricane with winds topping at 175 mph. Hurricane Katrina to this day remains to be the third largest hurricane to hit the United States.

Everyone that works in the public safety field knows that when you have bad weather coming, it is going to be a very busy and hectic time with power lines down, trees blown over, car accidents, etc. You can only imagine in your worst nightmares what it would be like with 175 mph winds forcing down on you and 20-foot waves of water, massive flooding, and total destruction. Theses telecommunicator went above and beyond the line of duty by taking charge of the situation at hand and performing their duties as a public safety official to the fullest. For their exemplary performance in the field of telecommunications, the APCO-MS Chapter of Public Safety would like to award all these telecommunicator the 2006 Larry Lindsey Award for their dedication, compassion, and hard working efforts in the field of public safety. The following names of the telecommunicator that were on duty the night of the storm that hit the southern part of our state is listed below. Congratulations for a job well done.

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