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Teamwork Leads to Successful Rescue of Snake Bitten Woman

Friday’s Heroes: AFD Firefighters and APD Open Space Officers

December 6, 2013

Albuquerque- Today Chief Administrative Officer Rob Perry, honored Albuquerque Fire Department Firefighters and Albuquerque Police Department Open Space Officers for their successful rescue of a woman who was in need of immediate evacuation from the Sandia foothills. The woman had been bitten by a snake deep in the foothills of the Sandia Mountains and the situation was urgent. The team working together saved this woman from a dire situation. Their teamwork is a testament to the united front that AFD and APD present to keep Albuquerque safe.

This past September, Open Space Officers and AFD were dispatched to the foothills where a female hiker was in need of assistance after a serious snake bite. The woman described her surroundings which were approximately 3 miles up from the Domingo Baca Canyon. AFD and Open Space Officers met at Elena Gallegos Open Space where they established how to get the woman back to safety. Both teams braved the rugged terrain until they found the woman and carried her back down 3 miles to the trailhead. There, an Open Space vehicle was waiting to transport the woman to get medical attention and ultimately complete recovery. 

Once the firefighters and officers loaded the woman into the ambulance, the Open Space Officers received another call. They were immediately deployed to the Jemez Mountains where they spent seven days camping out of their vehicles on a search and rescue effort for U.S. Forest Service Fire Fighter, Token Adams.

The true dedication shown here by both Open Space Officers and AFD shows how hard these men and women work day in and day out. These officers and firefighters exemplify the commitment and teamwork that keeps Albuquerque safe. They are great heroes and Albuquerque is grateful to have them.


Firefighters and Officers involved: FF Jacob Goevelinger, FF Ryan Medford, FF Zephyr Valverde, FF Edward Martinez, FF Joshua Magdeleno, FF Mike Schum, FF Carlos Romero, FF John Roumpf, FF Julian Lucero, FF Kelly Garvin, Sgt. Jeremy Basset, Officer Chad Melvin, Officer Jesus Banuelos, Officer Mark Dietz, & Officer Matthew Schmidt