About Coconino County

About Coconino County

Encompassing 18,661 square miles, Coconino County, Arizona, is the second largest county in the U.S. but one of the least populated. Our county includes Grand Canyon National Park, the Navajo, Havasupai, Hualapai and Hopi Indian Reservations, and the largest contiguous ponderosa pine forest in the world. Elevations range from 2,000 feet above sea level along the Colorado River to 12,633 feet at the summit of Mt. Humphreys in Flagstaff.

May 5, 2011

Helping One of Our Own

In January, 2011, my teammate, Scott Baker, was injured in a construction accident, leaving him with spinal cord injuries and paralyzed from the waist down. As today's article in the Arizona Daily Sun says, "As a SAR volunteer, Baker spent 25 years never hesitating to get up in the middle of the night, whatever the weather, and go searching for lost or stranded people."

And I know this from firsthand experience working with Scott, who has been a great field partner to me on several missions, including one all-night search on Mt. Agassiz. It was well below zero on that winter night, when our hands would go numb with cold the minute we'd remove our gloves to try to use our GPSes. We were both struggling out there, snowshoeing through deep drifts for hours, but Scott always kept his--and my--spirits up.

In addition to being a "ground-pounder," Scott was also a member of our team's technical / high-angle rescue unit.

And Scott has also been a helper in ways other than his 25 years as a Search and Rescue Volunteer. This husband and father was a 4-H parent for 10 years and helped children by maintaining equestrian equipment and a safe, happy place for children to practice horsemanship. Scott's wife also volunteers, serving on several committees in the community.

This Saturday, the Summit Fire Department Auxiliary, the local firefighters' union, Coconino County Sheriff's Search and Rescue and 4-H are coming together for a fundraiser at Coconino High School to help cover some of the costs associated with Scott's long-term rehabilitation down in Phoenix and other expenses not covered by insurance. Even the wheelchair alone costs $28,000. His family has been going to visit him every week down in the Valley to learn how to help him when he comes home, which is scheduled to be sometime next week.

Scott Baker fundraiser

Saturday, May 7th, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m
Coconino High School, 2701 N. Izabel St.
Chili cook-off, cake auction and silent auction raffle
Cost: $25 for chili cook-off; $5 for six raffle tickets; $10 T-shirts; $10 to taste all the chili you want.
Information: Summit Fire Department at 526-9537

Helping Out a Helper in Arizona Daily Sun
The flyer and entry form for the fundraiser
Coconino County Search & Rescue's Scott Baker page
Scott Baker's Recovery and Donation Page on Facebook

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