Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

North Pinellas good for you for April 20

Good for you

Related News/Archive

On a recent patrol of the Intracoastal Waterway aboard Coast Guard auxiliary vessel Broad on the Bow, coxswain Karen Miller and crew members Ann Bennett and Rob Mancuso spotted what they thought was a white plastic shopping bag floating in the water.

Upon closer inspection, they discovered it was actually a young egret struggling to swim with water-logged wings, its head barely breaking the water's surface.

Once the bird was safely retrieved from the water, a call was placed to Larry and Barb O'Brien, fellow Coast Guard auxiliary members and founders of Gulf Coast Bird Rescue. Within 20 minutes, Larry O'Brien met the crew at Clearwater's Seminole Street boat ramp to receive the egret.

The first thing O'Brien did was tip the egret upside down to remove any water that it may have swallowed. He also was concerned about the bird going into shock from swimming in 66-degree water and being totally water-logged. In his experience, egrets usually didn't do well in these types of rescues. Although not very optimistic about the bird's recovery, he left with the inert egret in a cage.

The following day, O'Brien called with good news. He thanked Bennett, Mancuso and Miller for their quick action and let them know that the young egret had recovered fully after being treated for hypothermia. He also informed them that the bird had no major injuries and had been released near the area where it was rescued.

Broad on the Bow and her crew of Bennett, Mancuso and Miller belong to the Clearwater Flotilla, while Larry and Barb O'Brien belong to the Dunedin Flotilla of the Coast Guard Auxiliary. All members of Division 11, which extends from Madeira Beach to Hudson. Their missions mirror those of the active duty Coast Guard with the exception of law enforcement and related activities.

• • •

Sunstar Paramedics team members James Bryant and Jay Horne recently attended three days of celebration and education in Washington, D.C., where they were awarded the Star of Life from the American Ambulance Association. It is the highest national honor an emergency medical service worker can receive.

The Star of Life awards recognize the nation's top ambulance service professionals, including paramedics, EMTs, dispatchers, customer service representatives and other operations personnel. The 2014 awards honored 82 professionals in the EMS industry.

Bryant, an assistant supervisor, joined Sunstar in 2009. He began his EMS career in 2005, working as a firefighter, EMT and paramedic. He was recognized as the 2013 Paramedic of the Year by Dunedin-Palm Harbor VFW Post 2550 for outstanding patient care, moral and ethical behavior and leadership within Sunstar and the Tampa Bay community.

Bryant serves on Sunstar's special events team and All Children's Hospital's transport team. He also volunteers with Shriner's Hospital, Masonic Cardiac Medical Research Foundation and the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Horne, an EMT, has worked with Sunstar since 2012. He was among the first emergency responders, alongside Sunstar's Christopher Jennings, on the scene of the tragic lawn mower accident that injured Ireland Nugent. Ireland, who was 2 years old at the time, had to undergo two below-the-knee amputations.

Horne assisted in transferring Ireland to the Bayflite crew, exhibiting professional emergency response skills with the highest level of calm and competence under such an emotional situation. Since the accident, Ireland has had a successful recovery and is walking well with the help of prosthetics.

"James and Jay truly exemplify what the Star of Life award represents," said Mark Postma, chief operating officer of Sunstar Paramedics. "We are thrilled to have them recognized among the nation's best emergency medical service professionals, as they both play an integral role at Sunstar and in the community."

Sunstar is the 911 ambulance transport service for all Pinellas County residents, employing 550 local residents and responding to around 500 calls a day.

Mail Good For You items to Tampa Bay Times, 1130 Cleveland St., Suite 100-A, Clearwater, FL 33755; fax to (727) 445-4119; or email

North Pinellas good for you for April 20 04/18/14 [Last modified: Friday, April 18, 2014 5:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect


    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  2. Hopes fade after landslide destroys Chinese village (w/video)


    Crews searching through the night in the rubble left by a landslide that buried a mountain village under tons of soil and rocks in southwestern China found 15 bodies, but more than 110 more people remained missing.

    Vehicles and people line a road leading to the site of a landslide in Xinmo village in Mao County on Saturday in southwestern China’s Sichuan Province. More than 100 people remained missing after the village was buried under tons of rocks and soil.
  3. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  4. Thousands converge in two St. Pete locations celebrating LGBT rights

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom Rockhill didn't know what to expect Saturday, but by noon people were knocking on the door of his bar Right Around the Corner in Grand Central.

    (From left to right) Emma Chalut 18, gets a rainbow sticker on her cheek from her sister Ellie, 15 both of Jacksonville before the annual St. Pete Pride parade in downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday. This year the route was changed from the Grand Central and Kenwood area to Bayshore Drive.
[EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  5. Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald dies

    TALLAHASSEE — A former Florida Supreme Court justice, who wrote a decision that prevented lawyers from excluding jurors because of their race, has died.

    Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald died Saturday, the court said in a statement. He was 93.