Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The people in your neighborhood - Pincher Creek EMT Lynn Brasnett

Lynn Brasnett with Diamond Jubilee certificate
C. Davis file photo
Pincher Creek Emergency Services Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Lieutenant Lynn Brasnett received her 10 Year Service Award in 2014. "I do both, firefighting and EMS (Emergency Medical Services). The bottom line is it takes a certain kind of person to be able to work in that environment. To me, I want to be able to help my community. That's really why I started to do this, and that's why I still do it."

Brasnett says her strong family ties led her to this path. "Sariah (Lynn's daughter) was looking to do something, and she worked the Lost Creek Fire. She ran into a guy doing a medic-van out there. She said,  'Mom, I know what I want to do.'" At that time, then Pincher Creek Fire Chief Kevin Weinberger hired Sariah. "She came home and said 'Mom, they're looking for people to drive the ambulance.' Well, I went, 'I can be an ambulance driver, I can drive anything'." This led to Brasnett talking to Weinberger.  "Well, Kevin said 'Yeah, we want you, but where do you want to take your EMR?' I went 'My what? Why?'" He was asking for her to get the training to become an Emergency Medical Responder to be properly qualified to drive an ambulance and respond to emergencies.  "I got my EMR and enjoyed it so much, then I did my EMT through an outreach program through SAIT."

Donning the gear at a recent fire training session
C. Davis photo
Brasnett listed off a number of different organizations she is affiliated and volunteers with. She is a Past President of Pincher Creek Rotary, Secretary Treasurer of the Ramroders Black Powder Club, and trains others in First Aid and CPR through St. John's Ambulance. "I also do...  I don't know, this sounds like I'm a professional volunteer," she said, laughing. Brasnett owns Four Winds Real Estate and assists in running her husband's business. Being her own boss makes it easier to take fire calls. "My office, my rules," she said, recognizing not everyone has the freedom to answer an emergency call when they are at work. "I help my daughter at Monster Fitness and I do personal training, and classes there as well."

Brasnett with a Mexican firefighter during recent Los Amigos trip
Dick/Lou Burnham photo
She sits on the Alberta College of Paramedics Exam Committee. "It's a governing body of EMS, of paramedics, EMRs, and EMTs. It's good to be involved with a governing body, you get to know what goes on behind the scenes."  Brasnett is very involved in a variety of activities.  "My family might say volunteering is my hobby, but I enjoy quilting, I shoot black powder, competitive black powder, we go camping, and I enjoy being outside." She said she also enjoys sewing and gardening and makes time to spend with her 15 grandchildren, one of whom lives close by. "And a great-grandson."

Brasnett said that shooting black powder is something she truly enjoys.  "I have made my own rifle. I made a 50 caliber flintlock rifle because some guy told me that girls can't build rifles. So I'm a little bit headstrong, maybe."

Related stories:
Rotary's Los Amigos 2015 project delivers ambulances and fire trucks to Mexico

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