Emergency services deserve high praise
SATURDAY was, as we report today on page five, the busiest day of the year so far for Oban lifeboat.
The volunteer RNLI crew responded to three call- outs in rapid succession after taking part in a multi-agency emergency exercise in which the combined services responded to a simulated plane crash at Oban Airport.
It brings into sharp relief the superb work done by all our emergency services. They race towards trouble when it strikes while the rest of us run away.
The emergency services are rightly hailed as heroes.
But it is perhaps the RNLI crews who are especially deserving of our gratitude given that the vast majority of them are volunteers.
The coxswain of Oban’s lifeboat, the Mora Edith MacDonald, Richard Johnson and mechanic Tom Kennedy are salaried senior members but the rest of the crew, from operations manager Billy Forteith down, risk their lives all too regularly purely out of a sense of public duty and a desire to aid those in trouble.
Indeed, very often they put to sea in the most appalling conditions – conditions in which anyone else would avoid setting sail altogether. We are all exceedingly lucky to have such selfless individuals are among us.
Tom Kennedy, left, Billy Forteith and Richard Johnson.