As members of a local search and rescue organization, Mr. Paul Kuchma and Mr. Bart Pouteau are prepared to find people. But they might not have expected to be climbing onto bridge girders to bring someone to safety. In May 2013, the Edmonton Police Service was involved in a search for a missing suicidal woman. After narrowing their focus to the Terwillegar area, they contacted Edmonton Regional Search and Rescue to assist in a ground search.
Mr. Pouteau and Mr. Kuchma were sent in the direction of the Terwillegar Bridge which crosses the North Saskatchewan River. It was there they spotted the female sitting on a girder underneath the bridge. Disoriented from an unknown amount of pills, she had tied a rope around her neck and fastened it to the bridge. While Mr. Pouteau contacted police, Mr. Kuchma climbed onto the bridge girder and approached the woman. He managed to cut the rope and bring her to a point where they could safely climb down. Together, Mr. Kuchma and Mr. Pouteau brought the woman from under the bridge to the side of the road where police officers could locate her. The pair then returned to the location to collect the rope and some of her personal belongings that had been left at the scene.
Mr. Kuchma and Mr. Pouteau went above and beyond expectations of their duties that day. Were it not for the quick reaction and assessment of the situation, the outcome would have had a different ending.