The Lee's Summit Fire Department kept a fun day of sledding from going awry
January 5, 2013
Lee's Summit Fire Department
Paramedic/Specialist Tom Fagan,
Photo by Fred Hulen
By Jessica Root
Intern Reporter for the Tribune
Although Lee’s Summit didn’t quite get the picturesque white Christmas carolers paint with their melodic voices, we did get a few inches of snow around the holidays. Winter weather is beautiful and fun, until someone gets into trouble.
Kelly Hulen and her family decided to go sledding on New Years Day. The great grandparents of the family live at the end of a cul-de-sac in Lakewood, a location with a perfect hill for sledding. Kelly’s son took his one-year-old son down several times creating a wonderful first sledding experience.
Kelly’s four-year-old granddaughter also went down the hill with her dad several times until she mustered up the courage to sled solo.
“They got her situated on the sled and off she went,” Kelly said. “Since she only weighs about 35 pounds, she was going fast. She hit a bump and went in the air, landed and kept going. She went in the air again, and unfortunately, when she landed this time, she was on the lake. She was about half way across when the sled finally stopped.”
When the little girl crawled off of the sled onto the frozen lake, the family was screaming for her to walk towards them on the bank.
As little girls often do, she returned to her sled to retrieve her hat, a possession she just couldn’t live without. She began the potentially-dangerous journey to the bank once again, and when she finally reached the safety of her family’s embrace, she was very upset that she had left her sled.
“We told her we would buy another sled, but our fear was another person or child would see the sled and try to get it,” Kelly said.
Fred Hulen, Kelly’s father-in-law, took pictures of the location of the sled on the frozen lake and went to the Lee's Summit Fire Department Station #4, to report the situation.
“There was heavy slush over the thin ice on the lake,” Fred said. “If kids had wandered out on the ice to get the sled it could have led to a tragedy.”
The Lee's Summit Firefighters agreed that the situation was bad, so they sent out Paramedic/Specialist Tom Fagan and a few other firefighters to retrieve the abandoned sled from the middle of the frozen lake.
“Fireman Tom, in his water gear, army-crawled to the sled and pushed it back to us,” Kelly said. “We are very thankful for Fireman Tom and all his co-workers at Lee's Summit Fire Department Station 4 for coming out to make sure no one got hurt.”
The Lee's Summit Fire Department kept a fun day of sledding at just that by preventing any future accidents that might be caused by the abandoned sled on the frozen lake.
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