75 years ago

Freeport Boy Scouts will put their shoulders to the wheel in another drive to help with the country’s war effort, having volunteered to conduct the campaign in Freeport for the collection and shipment of waste paper, helping to replenish the supply of this material so necessary to the successful conduction of the war, it is announced by J.S. Welboan, chairman of the drive in the Freeport-Lake Jackson area.

Scouts will also lend their efforts in the collection at Lake Jackson and Clute. Lake Jackson scouts under Scoutmaster R.E. Barrow will be in charge at Lake Jackson and Clute scouts under the direction of Rev. H.M. Dry will handle the Clute area.

Members of the Freeport troop 43 under the leadership of Scoutmaster W. J. Rave will make the first pickup in Freeport late Friday afternoon.

50 years ago

Elections on one percent city sales tax will be held Sept. 6 by the three major Brazosport cities, it was agreed Thursday night at a joint meeting of area mayors and councilmen.

It was also agreed to abandon the idea of enacting the tax only if all three cities passed it, Clute Mayor Bruce Runnels told The Facts.

Runnels said that in previous discussions, the consensus had been that an agreement would be made that if the tax were not passed in any one of the cities, the others would not enact it either.

Thursday, however, he said it was decided that any city in which voters approve levying the tax, will be expected to enact it immediately.

“We decided that it would not be treating our people right if they approved the tax and we did no go through with it,” Runnels said.

“There also seemed to be mutual agreement between the three cities that there was a definite mutual need for added revenue for the cities and the sales tax affords the most logical and feasible way of getting more money,” he continued.

“We feel it is necessary either through a sales tax or the property tax to raise more money and we feel this is a more fair tax,” Mayor Runnels said.

As far as his own city is concerned, he noted that Clute had not had a tax increase for operating use since 1958. A 1965 rate hike was to cover a bond issue for capital improvements.

Richwood representatives at the joint meeting did not feel that they had enough business in their city to make voting the tax practical, Runnels said.

He said no representatives were present from Lake Barbara or Quintana.

15 years ago

A ride in a hearse is not usually associated with medical care unless someone dies.

So how would citizens respond to a hospital ride courtesy of the local funeral home?

That is exactly how ambulance service began in the area and continued in Bay City until two years ago.

Drivers did little else besides scoop up patients and drive them to the nearest hospital or funeral home depending on the patient’s status, said John Creech, Emergency Medical Service program director at Brazosport College and paramedic for Lake Jackson.

Quite a change from today, with ambulances equipped with almost everything an emergency room has, Creech said.

Not only are ambulances practically mobile emergency room units, but paramedics are required to have five semesters of college training.

Brad Golden, 20, has been volunteering with Lake Jackson’s emergency medical service since he was 17. Golden plans on becoming a nurse and later attending medical school.

“Everyone’s told me, ‘Don’t tell them you’re an EMT or they’ll expect you to know everything,’” Golden said.

The emergency medical technicians are trained to do everything from starting IVs, drawing blood, giving narcotics to shocking patients back to life, treating wounds and analyzing data from cardiac monitors.

The technicians use a protocol system set up by their medical director that lays out the groundwork for dealing with the numerous situations they encounter. These protocols help the technicians save more lives.

One of the most widespread problems paramedics in the United States have is providing patients with a clear airway to breath, said Lake Jackson Emergency Medical Service administrator David Wiggs.

As a teacher, Wiggs has stressed this problem with his students, who now understand its importance.

“If you don’t have an airway, you don’t have a patient,” Golden said.

To alleviate this nationwide problem, Lake Jackson’s paramedics now have a protocol to administer Rapid Sequence Intervention.

Rapid Sequence Intervention allows paramedics to paralyze patients with sedatives, which stops the patients’ gag reflex when the breathing tube is put down their throat. This procedure requires highly trained and confident paramedics because by paralyzing the patient, their ability to breathe naturally is taken away.

Emergency medical technicians must work with both skill and speed to meet the many needs of their patients. Everything from thermometers to blood pressure cuffs are being recreated to be more advanced and practical.

Stretchers began as plain boards that had to be lifted from the ground into trucks. Now stretchers have rollers, collapsible legs and guard rails making patient transportation both easier and more safe.

Wiggs said he is hoping Lake Jackson can raise funds to buy new stretchers that lift automatically. This would mean technicians would do less lifting, as many technicians have back problems from straining daily. The new stretchers come at a high price — $7,000 each.

Some ambulances also have global positioning system units that help them give LifeFlight teams exact latitude and longitude coordinates for patient pickup.

“We live in an exciting time,” Creech said.

“People really don’t have an idea of what we can do now until we get there.”

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