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Thread: Talkeetna SAR

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Meadow Lakes , Alaska

    Default Talkeetna SAR

    Saw this on the dps trooper dispatch sight .

    Location: Talkeetna
    Case number: 08-72452

    Type: Search and Rescue

    Text: On 8-29-08 at approximately 1733 hours, Troopers and Mat-Su EMS
    rescue personnel responded to a report of a boat that had overturned in
    the Talkeetna River with three people on board. The boat had struck a
    log while navigating a curve in the river. One of the occupants was
    identified as Scott Schumacher, age 59 of New Jersey. Schumacher was
    thrown clear of the boat when it overturned. Schumacher was rescued by
    another boat that was nearby. The other two occupants of the boat were
    trapped under the boat as it continued to drift downstream. They were
    identified as Joseph Merrill, age 54 of Palmer and his 14 year old son,
    Matthew. All occupants were wearing personal flotation devices. EMS
    rescue personnel quickly responded along with Steve Mahay, age 61 of
    Talkeetna, in a Mahay's Riverboat Service jet-boat to rescue Merrill and
    the boy. Mahay hooked his anchor onto the overturned boat and pulled it
    upright with his boat. Merrill and his son were rescued, having spent
    more than 30 minutes trapped under the boat with a six inch air pocket
    allowing them to breathe. Merrill and his son were transported by EMS
    to Mat-Su Regional Medical Center for mild hypothermia. Schumacher was
    released by EMS at the scene.

  2. #2
    Member chriso's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Los Anchorage

    Thumbs up Probably the first guys Mahay's helped out over the years huh?

    Way to go Steve, you've still got it in you. I'm sure hoping someday all youve done for folks comes back on you. Apparently the father and son kept their wits about them pretty well to stay alive in those circumstances.

  3. #3

    Default How will they ever thank him

    Take a guy like him, responsible for a good deal of tourist activity in that small town, add to it the service he provides, consider the fact he is almost always there when somebody needs help, and top it off with a guy you can have a beer with and enjoy good conversation and a wealth of knowledge.
    It kills me when you hear somebody complain about what he gets to shuttle folks up and down that river.
    Instances like this reflect how easy you can get into trouble while doing things that appear to be routine.
    Its nice to know that help like this is available without question.
    Thanks to Steve and all of those who give when they can. Our thanks is probably pretty small along side knowing you potentially saved a human life.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006


    Fantastic, I don't know Steve but sure hope he or someone like him is around if I get into trouble.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008


    Things like this make America great! Hats off to those that go in harms way to help and protect others!

  6. #6
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    We really need to give thanks to the two women Talkeetna EMT's and one Trapper Creek EMT that did a bunch of the work also, the troopers and the rest of us just waited at the launch for them to return. Also involved was one of Steve's employees, J.J. Mahay's is always ready to assist Talkeetna EMS and we really appreciate it. Steve and his x-wife Kris were some of the founding members of Talkeetna Ambulance and have never lost that willingness to help out.


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