Hidden Heroes: 911 Dispatchers of Chester County

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By Kendall Patterson
Staff Writer

When burglary occurs; when there is a crash; when someone dials 9-1-1; and more, there are people that help save lives, yet do not get recognized as often; the dispatchers.
Working day and night around the clock, even on holidays, if it were not for these hidden heroes our local firemen, police officers, EMT’s, etc., would not be notified about our local emergencies in time.
The trained professionals take on the 13th most stressful job in the nation everyday as they sit behind their communications desk.
They face situations requiring them to make difficult, sometimes life and death, decisions over the phone. Some emergencies require immediate action, and emergency responders have not had time to arrive. The operator must take over and advise the caller which actions to take. Dispatchers must remain calm, themselves, during these situations; a skill we must acknowledge and appreciate. They reassure the caller, give direction and gather information simultaneously. This information is passed to emergency responders as it is received, allowing responders a faster and more informed arrival. Most of the time, dispatchers will remain on the line with callers and serve as a calming, reassuring voice until first responders arrive. These are some ways these extraordinary women contribute to the safety and security of our communities. Most of what they do each day in service to our county is unseen and unheard, because the call does not spark news. That does not change the fact that a difference is made every day for one or more lives from the seat of a public safety dispatcher.
“They love their profession, serving and protecting the City of Henderson and Chester County,” said 911 Chester County Emergency Communications Director Patricia Ledford.
That being said, we all would like to thank you for your diligence and service to our community and always answering the call.

CINDY SHOE
COURTNEY SIBLEY
DAPHANE WARD
KATELYNN PRATT
KIM ELWAY
CRYSTAL PICKETT
TRACY CLIMER
TERESA BARKER
MELLISA CARMACK