The town of Pilot Mound began the year 2021 with the good news of a heartfelt contribution to its residents and community visitors: a new Automated External Defibrillator (AED).
The town has an older, still functional AED, but it’s kept in the Pilot Mound Fire Department truck, and it isn’t immediately accessible. Since the Pilot Mound Community Building is a venue for wedding receptions and other large gatherings, a permanent, wall-mounted AED was needed in the event of a cardiac emergency.
The Bluff Creek Wranglers 4-H Club applied for and was awarded a Community Seed Grant from Pioneer and the state 4-H Foundation to purchase an AED. The Pilot Mound Fire Department (PMFD) and MIRZA Lodge #609 partnered with the 4-H Club to purchase and install the AED.
“Emergency medical response for communities like Pilot Mound is an on-going concern,” says Pilot Mound fire chief, Sean Whalen. “We no longer have a local First Responders, so having an AED available in town might mean the difference between life and death. The Bluff Creek Wranglers have been fantastic partners—the kids assist annually with the MIRZA breakfast, and a few years ago worked with the PMFD and the Red Cross to install smoke detectors throughout the community. Everyone owes them a hearty thank you.”
The club had planned to install the AED by May 2019, but Covid-19 provided an obstacle. The PMFD relies on the support of a spring Biscuits & Gravy Breakfast fundraiser, organized by MIRZA Lodge #609. The Breakfast had to be postponed, and it was uncertain when it would be re-scheduled. It finally was held October 11, with a combination of drive-through and dine-in. Members of the 4-H club delivered meals to people in their vehicles and bussed tables.
The Pilot Mound Fire Department ordered an AED, but it was on back order. As soon as it arrived, members of the Bluff Creek Wranglers 4-H club attended the PMFD meeting on January 11 to help install the AED inside the Pilot Mound Community Building. It now is available for community use and close at hand in case of emergency.