Nearly every day I go into town and I will find something amazing and interesting going on - ALL to improve the quality of life and maintain it for the citizens of Manning.
Saturday afternoon I went into town and saw a tall green tower down by the fire station so I went to investigate.
It so happened to be a special fire & rescue practice and drill session that started 8:00 in the morning.
The department at one time in the not too distant past was down to the upper 20s of a possible full complement of 36. It is now back to 32.

This is a shout out to all young adults in the community to get involved if you are not and especially consider volunteering as a fireman.
I found out that Marc Arp & Robert "Bruno" Ehlers are the "senior" members of the department now - graduates of MHS 1977/1978 respectively.
The Manning Fire Department organized in 1883 and since then, hundreds of men and I believe just one woman have volunteered.

Having lived in the Manning area my whole life I have seen a constant environment of unparalleled volunteerism and community involvement that is in the DNA of the community that goes back to way before the 1881 founding of Manning to those Pioneers who forged into the unknown Prairie to help build this amazing nation we live in today.
Not everyone in Manning does volunteer but MOST do volunteer in some capacity in this community.


I also see every day on the news about people protesting nearly everything under the sun.
Far be it from me to criticize them but as I reflect over the years living here in Manning and seeing how much time, work, money, effort, and faith it takes to keep this community going - I wonder if any of these protestors ever volunteer for their fire department, church, community organizations, school, military organization - anything?
Even though some use whistles during their protest, I'll bet none of them have ever volunteered as a referee at a community sporting event...they would turn tail and run if they ever got booed.

If someone sees a problem or need that requires attention in Manning then they form a group to see if something can be accomplished - BUT they don't form their group to protest something or complain about something...
Of course it is much harder and less "cool" to actually have to work, spend time and even your own money to accomplish something constructive.

So much for my rambling - but I hope the next time you see a Fireman or any volunteer - that you thank them for what they do for our community.

Now look at the first 3 pictures and then contrast them to the following drill photos by some of our amazing Manning volunteers!


August 11, 2018, Manning Fire & Rescue volunteers training "on belay" in a high elevation rescue drill.


Ryan Renze on the right getting ready to be a "victim."


The red rope is the main line and the blue rope is the backup safety line.

Some of the young volunteers today have probably never climbed a tree or high building or swung from a rope - even as a kid.
So part of the training is to give the volunteers experience in trusting their fellow rescuers and experiencing high elevation situations while working as a team.

I kidded Ryan that this is similar to the things people my age did as kids in the barn using a barn rope, or in tree forts - of course minus the safety steps and out of view of our parents.


Now the "rescuer" on the left is "on belay."


Now the rescuer has to connect his harness to the rescuee with safety ropes and harness.


The other part of the team working the ropes.

If you ever wonder where some of your fire department donations go to - this safety device cost over $1200.00
It is well worth it because of the built-in safety aspects of the device - watch the video linked below.


Safely reaching the ground.

On Belay

On Belay

Team effort

As I was thinking back, I remembered I captured the High Angle Rescue drill by the fire department at AGP.
It was in 2007 and I'm so glad I have the digital database to go back to and grab a few scenes from the past to show everyone again.
This was definitely a more realistic drill than the one held recently. I'm not sure of the exact height but I'm fairly sure the silo is around 100 feet high.
Here are a few scenes I showed on my web page back in 2007.


Robert Barsby, Jr - "look mom, no hands!"


View from the ground


I think this is Travis Sybesma

A different perspective of how high we are in these pictures.

Drill on the south side of the silo

Looking due west in this view

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