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First responders, law enforcement, volunteers praised for April blizzard work

SIDNEY, Neb. - Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, Colonel John Bolduc of the Nebraska State Patrol, and others came to Sidney Thursday to recognize the efforts by law enforcement, city officials, community volunteers, and many more to rescue and care for more than 100 motorists who were stranded on Interstate 80 during a blizzard on April 13-14.

“First responders, law enforcement, our school bus drivers, churches, businesses, volunteers, all pitched in to go take care of those people,” Governor Ricketts stated. “That’s the spirit of Nebraska.”

Gov. Ricketts, Colonel Bolduc, State Senator Steve Erdman, Sheriff John Jenson, and Sidney City Councilman Bob Olsen all made remarks and presented plaques to everyone involved in the process. Multiple different organizations came together to ensure the safety of those trapped in the winter storm.

“There were 10 agencies, public and private, that were involved in this event,” Col. Bolduc explained. “That’s the teamwork that brought a successful conclusion to this, where as a result of the extreme weather, no lives were lost.”

Col. Bolduc provided statistics from the blizzard saying over 300 miles of interstate in the state were closed during this storm and there were also 300 vehicles trapped on I-80 that needed assistance. Without everyone involved, and the teamwork showcased, the results could have been much different.

“I have great respect and admiration for this entire group and team of people that worked so well together to accomplish the one goal of helping another in a time of need,” Sheriff John Jenson remarked. “This should be a reminder of the quality of individuals and volunteers that we have living in our community, and the great state of Nebraska.”

Those honored at Thursday’s presentation included the Nebraska State Patrol troops and dispatch workers, the Sidney Police Department and Cheyenne County Sheriff’s Office, the Nebraska Department of Roads, Region 21 Emergency Management, Regional West medical staff, First United Methodist Church, Sonny’s Super Foods, and individual volunteers.

 

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