Leader of Vermont EMS Ambulance Convoy, John Vose, Highly Regarded Among Peers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 23, 2005

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BURLINGTON – John Vose has fallen through a burning roof, dislocated his shoulder while carrying a stretcher across ice, and survived an intensive-care hospitalization after breathing toxic fumes. Leading a convoy of 14 ambulances and 35 Vermont Emergency Medical Service personnel will be business as usual for Vose.

During his 26-year career as a fire fighter and paramedic, including care provided during his “free time” in an emergency room in Dallas, Vose has sought out challenging clinical environments where poise and leadership attributes are essential.

“John is completely unflappable,” said Dan Manz, EMS director for the Vermont Department of Health. “He’s a great problem solver. I can’t think of anyone better to lead this operation.”

Vose sounded calm and resilient on Friday as Vermont’s convoy was routed for arrival in Forney, Texas on Saturday. At the direction of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Vose planned to continue to a FEMA staging area set up at Reliant Stadium in Houston after the storm hits land.

Vose, 43, administrator for Upper Valley Ambulance Service in Fairlee, Vermont, began his career with Golden Cross Ambulance Service in Clairmont, NH in 1979. He became a Paramedic in 1982 and joined the Addison Fire Dept in Texas in 1985. Eager to gain field experience, Vose worked in the emergency room at Parkland Hospital in Dallas, filling in during a nursing shortage on his “days off.”

“In the city your transport time for a patient as a medic was maybe 10 or 15 minutes,” Vose said. “The hospital allowed me to do a lot more in the field and use skills I normally would not get to use. And I worked with doctors who helped me a lot with assessment tools.”

Vose moved back to New Hampshire with his wife, Lisa, and helped with the formation of Upper Valley Ambulance in 1990. Upper Valley Ambulance has grown to become a seven-ambulance, 16-employee operation that services 600 square miles in Vermont and New Hampshire.

“I was involved in hiring John,” said Kevin Cole, field supervisor for Upper Valley Ambulance. “He had a reputation among the Lebanon fire fighters. They said, ‘If you don’t hire him you are crazy.’ He is thorough at what he does. He does everything well.”

Despite raising two teen-age sons, Vose still finds time to serve as as an assistant medical examiner, vice president of the Vermont Ambulance Association and maintain memberships on the New England Council for EMS and the National Registry of EMTs.

“People are always calling him to teach classes, on top of the work he does in the community and three days a week he drives our son 160 miles round trip to hockey practice,” said his wife, Lisa. “His schedule is unbelievable, but if somebody needs help, he is there.”

Vose predicted on Friday that the Vermont team will experience an environment post-storm similar to a combat zone.

“We are ready to be self-reliant and expect we’ll face a full range of issues,” Vose said. “We are well-trained and we will do whatever is necessary to help.