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Michele Trautman of Medford cleans a Scout's shoulder wound in the medical tent. — — — Local scouts worked in the medical tent at the National Jamboree

The fatal accident at the National Scout Jamboree gave five Explorer Scouts from Southern Oregon a graphic look at the world of emergency medicine.

The Scouts went to the Jamboree to provide first aid for Scouts in the encampment. Their medical tent happened to be near the site of the electrocution accident that killed four Scout leaders from Alaska.

The children of the men who died were brought to our tent, said Ed Sutton, one of three adults who accompanied five Rogue Valley Explorers to the Jamboree in Virginia.

Sutton said medical personnel had to wait for the power lines to be de-energized before medical personnel could approach the victims.

The wait seemed like forever, he said.

— Until the power was shut off, all we could do was keep people back (from the accident site).

The Scouts are members of an Explorer Scout post sponsored by Mercy Flights, Jackson County's largest ambulance service. Sutton, Michelle Davis and Bryan Dorris accompanied five Explorers to the Jamboree: Michele Trautman of Medford; Tyler Schmidt of Central Point; Analisa McKinley of Central Point; Kevin Wheeler of Eagle Point; and Lynnette Jackson of Jacksonville.

Our clinic would be kind of like a little emergency room, Sutton said in a telephone interview from Fort A.P. Hill, site of the giant quadrennial extravaganza that attracts thousands of Scouts from all over the United States.

Ninety Scouts and adult leaders went to the Jamboree to represent the Crater Lake Council, which includes Southern Oregon, Northern California, Bend and Klamath Falls.

As the Jamboree wound down toward closing today, the Scouts were trying to move beyond the accident, said Explorer Michele Trautman.

We've been staying busy with patients, said Trautman, who plans to attend Central Oregon Community College to study emergency medicine. There's so much patient contact here. We're seeing 70 to 80 patients a day.

Trautman said the day of the accident was pretty rough. It was the first day of the Jamboree and it got everybody's spirits down.

The Explorers were kept busy treating victims of sunstroke and heat exhaustion when President Bush's scheduled visit last week was canceled. Some Scouts overheated during the hours they waited in the hot Southern sun for the President to arrive.

The Explorers will visit Washington, D.C., for several days after the Jamboree before returning to the Rogue Valley. They'll work with physicians in a D.C. hospital for several shifts, getting a taste of life in a big city hospital's emergency department.

Sutton said the Explorers will likely remember the trip for the rest of their lives. They've seen a whole lot in the past few weeks.


Reach reporter Bill Kettler at 776-4492, or e-mail