Peruvian exchange students, new police officers and firefighters, and a good Samaritan were recognized at the Snoqualmie City Council meeting on Feb. 13.
The meeting began with a presentation of the Mayor’s Lifesaving Award to José Nolasco, a Snoqualmie man who saved the life of Dorothy Schaan who had fallen into Coal Creek along 372 Place SE, Snoqualmie.
Snoqualmie Fire Department’s Lieutenant Jake Fouts explained that on Jan. 18, Dorothy Shawn, of Snoqualmie, had fallen into the creek and floated along for almost half a mile and went through a box culvert. Nolasco tried to help when he heard Schaan yelling from the river.
“He was out doing some work for a homeowner down there and heard some faint cries for help, he immediately turned his head and saw this woman floating down the creek,” Fouts said. “The reality is, if he wouldn’t have stepped into the creek when he did to grab her… It would have likely turned from a (basic life support) response to a body recovery had he not been there at the right time. It’s a very remarkable feat to have a local resident here to be able to step into the water to grab somebody and truly risk his life.”
The Snoqualmie Fire Department recommended the mayor present the Life saving award to Nolasco for his action to help another citizen.
The police and fire departments were also recognized for several new additions to their staffs. Police officers Brady Lanham and John Fishbeck took their oaths of office at the meeting, and were officially recognized as the department’s newest officers.
The city also presented a helmet and badge to the fire department’s recent hire, Theresa Tozier. Tozier is the first full-time female firefighter to be hired in Snoqualmie. Three new volunteers, two EMTs and one firefighter were also recognized; volunteer EMTs Tanner Webb, Kristina Myers, and firefighter Lori Jones were welcomed to the department.
The new hires in both departments were made possible by Snoqualmie’s Proposition 1, a property tax increase that voters approved last November.
The presentations were wrapped up by a performance of a traditional Peruvian dance by seven exchange students from Snoqualmie’s sister city of Chaclacayo, Peru. Tina McCollum of the Snoqualmie Sister Cities Association introduced the group and said their trip marked the ninth year of the association’s exchange program. The students are set to return to Peru on Feb. 26.
After the festivities, the city held a public hearing on proposed utility rate increases that had been discussed at two recent public meetings. Two Snoqualmie citizens commented during the hearing. Stephanie Rosolack asked that the increase be spread over a longer period of time than the currently proposed four years. Peggy Shepard asked the council to consider lessening the increase for residents of downtown Snoqualmie, due to the economic differences between downtown and the Ridge.
The council will vote on the utility rate increase at its next meeting, 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 27.