HEROES 2020 ~ The Men & Women of RMC/RPS

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produced by Andrew Hueler & Julie Zimmerman

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Customer Service While Maintaining A Focus On Quality, Efficiency, Innovation, And Safety

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Mobile Life Support Services Honors Co-founder

Mobile Life Support Services Honors Co-founder,

Rick Metzger, 20 Years After Passing

It has been 20 years since the death of Frederick “Rick” Metzger, co-founder of Mobile Life Support Services. Rick and his wife Gayle established the company in 1981, and it has grown from a four-person operation to the largest ambulance service in the Hudson Valley. Last week, Gayle and her Mobile Life family honored Rick with a video testimonial celebrating his life and legacy that lives on in the emergency medical services industry.

Rick started his EMS career in the 1960s and became one of the first ever NYS-certified Paramedics in 1971. He later helped to found the Hudson Valley Regional Emergency Services Council, on which he served in multiple roles, including president and treasurer. Rick also held the position of president for the New York State Ambulance Association. A man ahead of his own time and industry innovator, he practiced what would eventually become EMS policies and procedures. He was an educator and a true expert in his field. He was an industry titan, caring for those in need and paving the way for future EMS providers.

Mobile Life began almost 40 years ago in the City of Newburgh. Now, the company provides emergency services to communities and healthcare facilities throughout the region, including the counties of Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, Ulster and Westchester. It operates a fleet of more than 70 emergency vehicles and employs approximately 500 emergency medical and office professionals.

“Rick’s dedication to emergency medical services and the creation of Mobile Life Support Services have touched countless lives. His impact reaches far beyond this company and into how emergency medicine is practiced in this region. He led by example as one of the most compassionate, intelligent and competent providers in the business. He’d be so proud of the continued fostering of the values and principles that were the foundation of our company as well as the education and training Mobile Life is able to provide – not just to its own staff, but also members of the community. All of these things are a reflection of our commitment to carry on his legacy by providing the highest quality of patient care to all who need it,” said Gayle Metzger, Mobile Life Owner and Chairman of the Board.

The company used its social media accounts to honor Rick on the 20th anniversary of his passing with a video montage featuring firsthand accounts of Rick’s life and legacy.

“He was our founder, original leader and, to many, a mentor, father figure and friend. Although 20 years have gone by since his passing, those who knew him, loved him, and those who loved him will forever remember him as kind, brilliant, fair and dedicated to his craft. May we continue to honor him every day by providing care and comfort to those in need without bias or judgement, as he did,” read the accompanying Facebook post shared by Mobile Life.

The video included stories shared by Gayle and several past and present Mobile Life employees, each with their own emotional, funny, honest and very genuine tributes.

“I remember the day I met Rick Metzger in October of 1985. I was a brand-new paramedic, and I walked into Mobile Life’s one and only station on Bridge Street in Newburgh and got a chance to actually sit down with Rick and talk a little about EMS and how I would fit in with Mobile Life. There’s one thing about the man that I think everyone who knew him would speak of: He was a mentor, he was a leader, he was all those things you apply to those people who are so formative in your life. A truly amazing man,” said Scott Woebse, current Mobile Life President & CEO.

To view the memorial video, visit Mobile Life Support Services on their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or YouTube page. To learn more about Mobile Life, visit www.mobilelife.com. Individuals interested in employment opportunities with Mobile Life should visit the company’s website to submit an application or inquire about educational opportunities to become certified.

About Mobile Life Support Services, Inc.

Mobile Life Support Services, Inc. is a New York State Certified Advanced Life Support paramedic ambulance company that provides emergency services to communities and healthcare facilities throughout the Hudson Valley Region of New York State, including the counties of Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, Ulster, and Westchester. Founded in 1981 by Rick and Gayle Metzger, Mobile Life is composed of more than 500 EMS professionals across the region and operates a fleet of more than 60 ambulances and 26 stations. With a collective population of more than 1,000,000 residents, Mobile Life handles approximately 100,000 calls per year. For more information, visit www.mobilelife.com.

Book Promo: Final Sin by Chelle Cordero

FS trio

Deputy Sheriff Commander Jake Carson has his hands full… investigation of a brutal multiple homicide, a troubled son and a vindictive ex-wife. He meets young, free-spirited paramedic Julie Jennings. When Julie becomes the subject of an obsession, it puts both of them in danger…

For Matt and Julie, their tour of duty had started out like many others. There had been a call to a minor motor vehicle accident, another for chest pains and one more for a cancer patient who needed to go to the hospital for treatment. Many of the upstate New York communities had contracted with Paramedic services to complement the existing ambulance corps and provide emergency medical response. Whether paid or unpaid, the certified corps always responded with Emergency Medical Technicians who were capable of handling most emergencies. When the Paramedics were dispatched as well, IV drugs and additional hands could often help make critical differences when necessary.

This call had gone out over the radio for a burn victim, so none of the responding police, fire fighters, volunteer ambulance crew nor paramedics were prepared for what they found when they reached this isolated tool shed. From the outside, the grayed wood had seemed serene enough, and the one small window had been caked over with dirt. She didn’t think that she would have given the shed a second glance under normal circumstances. But this was far from normal. No one had anticipated the horror scene inside.



Final Sin was an Honorable Mention in the Fiction Category of the 2010 NY Book Festival & a 2009 Pushcart Prize nominee.  EMSWorld posted about Final Sin & Hyphema.

To purchase:

Amazon.com (print)

Amazon.com (Kindle)

Audible – Audiobook

.pdf E-Book (Payloadz)

multiple ebook formats (Smashwords)


Apple iTunes

When It’s Time to Call 9-1-1

3 Signs It’s Time to Call 9-1-1
Software Developer & Paramedic Reviews Biological
Warnings Many Sadly Ignore

Each year, about 600,000 Americans – one in four — in the United States die from heart disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Of the 715,000 Americans who have a heart attack each year, about 525,000 are first-timers, says the CDC, and those individuals may not know what’s happening. Sadly, many people do not get to the hospital on time, says paramedic Dale Hemstalk.

“If someone is having a heart attack, for example, they should get to the hospital without delay upon the initial onset of symptoms,” says Hemstalk, who is also a software developer with Forté Holdings, Inc., a provider of health-care software that works closely with paramedics, emergency medical technicians and firefighters to speed delivery of medical services. The company’s newest software, iPCR, (www.ipcrems.com), takes electronic patient-care reporting in the field to new levels of portability and affordability.

“We live in an age in which we should be taking greater advantage of our technology for health purposes – but you have to call for help first!” Hemstalk says.
He shares warning signs that it’s time dial 9-1-1.

• Symptoms for a heart attack: Men and women frequently report different symptoms. Men tend to have the “classic” signs, such as pressure, fullness, squeezing or pain in the center of the chest that goes away and comes back; pain that spreads to the shoulders, neck or arms; chest discomfort with lightheadedness, fainting, sweating, nausea or shortness of breath.
For women, symptoms tend to be back or jaw pain; difficulty breathing; nausea or dizziness; unexplainable anxiety or fatigue; mild flu-like symptoms; palpitations, cold sweats or dizziness. Triggers tend to be different between the sexes, too. In women, it’s often stress; in men, it’s physical exertion.

• Symptoms for a stroke: There are clear, telltale characteristics of a stroke, including sagging on one side of the face, an arm that’s drifting down and garbled speech. But there are also more subtle signs from the onset, such as sudden numbness of one side of the body, including an arm, leg and part of the face; sudden confusion, trouble speaking and understanding; sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes; sudden loss of balance; sudden headache for no apparent reason. Risk factors include diabetes, tobacco use, hypertension, heart disease, a previous stroke, irregular heartbeat, obesity, high cholesterol and heavy alcohol use.

• Symptoms for heart failure: This is not the same as a heart attack, which occurs when a vessel supplying the heart muscle with oxygen and nutrients becomes completely blocked. Heart failure is a chronic condition where the heart can’t pump properly, which may be due to fluid in the lungs. Warning signs include shortness of breath, fatigue, swollen ankles, chest congestion and an overall limitation on activities. Just one of these symptoms may not be cause for alarm; but more than one certainly is. Risk factors include various heart problems, serious viral infections, drug or alcohol abuse, severe lung disease and chemotherapy.

“At no point should anyone be discouraged from calling 911; the bottom line is, if you feel it’s an emergency and you need to call 911, call 911!” Hemstalk says. “There are many reasons to seek assistance from emergency responders, and they are not limited to those that I’ve mentioned.”

About Dale Hemstalk

A United States Air Force Veteran and Career Firefighter Paramedic, Hemstalk has been providing emergency care for over 20 years. During his tenure in EMS, Hemstalk has been an educator, Paramedic Preceptor and Field Training Officer. Working for government agencies and private companies alike, Hemstalk relies on his experiences to help design product features that improve efficiency, speed and accuracy while keeping the field provider’s needs his highest priority. Joining Forte Holdings’ team was a natural progression combining his love of the Emergency Medical Services industry and new technology along with his commitment to providing the best possible documentation on each and every call for service. To stay current in the industry, Hemstalk remains active in EMS, is still a full time Firefighter/Paramedic and continues his passion for treating those in need.