Ski Patrol: When The Slopes Take You Down, They Provide A Lift.
Christina Von Mertens, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
As one of the senior patrollers at Crystal, Christina often responds to the most gruesome accident scenes. She finds that providing proper care means keeping her emotions under control. On the difficultly of dealing with injured people she says, "You do everything you can do for someone and then you hand them over [to a doctor]; and you're back to work." With an off-season that's filled with extreme kayaking and exploring treacherous, uncharted rivers, Christina clearly seems to be the portrait of an adrenaline junkie.
Chris Morin, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
Chris is well known for his playful side; he once offered fellow patrollers a few hundred dollars to eat nothing but salad dressing and other condiments. But Chris has a serious side as well, especially after nearly being buried alive in a December 2007 avalanche. He does everything he can to help others avoid similar accidents.
Andrew and Michelle Longstreth, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
Andrew is one of Crystal Mountain's most experienced patrollers, as well as being a paramedic. He met his wife, fellow patroller Michelle Longstreth, while he was working at a New Zealand ski resort. He says "I thought she was a beautiful Kiwi, while she thought I was a rich American. She made a big mistake." Happily married since 1993, they have one daughter and try to spend every spare moment they have on the snow.
Brooks Werner, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
Brooks moved to the Seattle area in 2005 to pursue a career in firefighting. But he was lacking EMS knowledge until 2007, when he joined the Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol. There, he gained valuable experience in treating victims. He claims his favorite part of the job "is watching other patrollers fall."
Forest McBrian, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
You could call Forest Crystal Mountain's "resident dude." He marches to the beat of his own drummer and is fluent in the language of the mountain's younger, snowboarding clientele. He has no qualms about busting those who act like punks because in his words, "I get paid by the hour to be a major jerk around here."
Chris Petry, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
As the bassist in local mountain band, Bits of Knowledge, Chris is Crystal Mountain's biggest rocker. After long days filled with broken bones and trying situations, he claims music helps him escape the stresses of his job; "I work and then I play, and when I play, I play music and that's my release," he says.
Kim Kircher, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
Despite waging a two decade battle against her Type 1 Diabetes, Kim is one of the most athletic members of the patrol. She is vigilant about staying a step ahead of the disease and says, "It's been a project to be super, super healthy so that it's not the diabetes that kills me, it's old age. That's what my goal is."
Corey Meador, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
With a father who worked at a ski resort snack bar and a traveling ski bum for a mother, patroller Meador was practically born into the business. As a volunteer patroller for 10 years before turning pro in 2000, Corey oversees accident investigations at Crystal Mountain. His belief is that most collisions happen when people ski too close to others.
Devin Platt, Patroller, Crystal Mountain
As one of the best skiers on the Ski Patrol, Devin is the go-to guy when it comes to remote mountain rescues. His strength and his agility are what help him overcome Crystal's daunting terrain, but even the most experienced skier faces challenges. In his words, "There's avalanche hazards, there's rock hazards. You just never know what you're going to find out there."