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MRC should be commended for service

Date: 5/1/2013

It has not been widely publicized that many of the valiant volunteers with vests or other identifying wearing apparel who raced to the rescue after bombs exploded at [the April 15] Boston Marathon were Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) members from the Boston Unit and several other Eastern Massachusetts Units.

The Town of Longmeadow Board of Health takes pride in being the sponsoring agency for the town of Longmeadow MRC Unit. This group of over 120 trained general and medically-trained volunteers stands ready to assist the Town in responding to emergency as well as non-emergency public health needs (e.g. manning annual flu clinics). Several times a year the Longmeadow unit is put on stand-by status ready to deploy should weather conditions require the manning of a warming station or shelter. The unit is also ready, upon request, to assist neighboring communities for response to their local emergencies or to man first aid stations at mass events in this region of the state.

As news accounts related, the MRC volunteers present were quick to provide medical services and move victims out of harm's way. MRC volunteers also worked in shelters that were set up to evacuate runners off of the course, and are continuing their service in providing mental health support to those affected by the event. The efficiency of their response reflected careful planning, extensive training, heroic execution and elements of good fortune. The significance can not easily be measured, but the importance and value of MRC volunteers is clear: MRC volunteers were ready to respond in an effective manner to save lives and comfort the survivors.

The Longmeadow Board of Health salutes the members of the Longmeadow MRC Unit and its contribution in making Longmeadow a healthier, safer and more resilient community

To join the Longmeadow Medical Reserve Corps Unit, kindly contact Beverly Hirschhorn, unit coordinator ( directly or log on to the state MRC website ( ). Medically-credentialed individuals are always needed; however, general volunteers and volunteers with social work or counseling training are also particularly needed at this time.

Beverly Hirschhorn

Director of Health