Dispatchers recognized in appreciation week - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Dispatchers recognized in appreciation week

Photo credit: WDAM Photo credit: WDAM
PINE BELT (WDAM) -

The second week in April is a special week to some people who hold 911 professions.

April 9-15 is National Public Safety Telecommunications week, and it is where people behind the scenes, the emergency dispatchers are recognized.

“It’s that calming voice, it’s that knowledgeable person on the other end of the phone receiver that can set the tone for everything,” Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel said. 

That calming voice is an emergency dispatcher, and they are generally the first line of defense when tragedy strikes.

Megan Stuart, who has been a Lamar County dispatcher for close to five years, said her job is rewarding.

“It means a lot, we deal with a lot of people and some of them are having the worst day of their lives,” Stuart said. 

But at the end of the day, she said it is all about helping people.

“Helping people, when they call in here, it’s usually an emergency and we’re their lifeline, we’re helping them,” Stuart said. “The deputies, they depend on us, we keep them safe.”

Rigel said, “That’s usually the first person, if somebody’s having a crisis or an incident, its dispatch they talk to."

Oftentimes, the job is stressful and can hit a little close to home. Recently, Stuart made the final radio call for the fallen Sumrall firefighters.

“It was a very emotional day," Stuart said. "After I did the final call, I had to go outside and just kind of take a breather."

When the job hits close to home, they lean on one another.

“But you know your coworkers are here and they’re there to talk to you through everything, so it’s a big help,” she said.

When the phone rings, their job is to keep people calm and gather information.

“When somebody calls in, we want to get them the help they need as soon as possible,” Stuart said. “We try to calm them down, tell them everything is going to be OK, and we just have a procedure that we go to, and we just want to try to get them the best help as soon as possible.”

Rigel said, “They're some of the unsung heroes, they’re the ones that people never see,” Rigel said. “I admire them, they don’t get the credit that they deserve, this week is in honor of them, and I think it’s a great thing.”

Copyright 2017 WDAM. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsLOCALMore>>

  • Hattiesburg pastor reacts to passing of Billy Graham

    Hattiesburg pastor reacts to passing of Billy Graham

    Thursday, February 22 2018 12:03 AM EST2018-02-22 05:03:54 GMT
    Pastor Jeff Clark of Hattiesburg's Venture Church. Photo credit WDAM.Pastor Jeff Clark of Hattiesburg's Venture Church. Photo credit WDAM.

    A Hub City minister is reacting to the death of the Rev. Billy Graham, the most widely-heard Christian evangelist in history.   He died Wednesday morning at his home in Montreat, North Carolina at the age of 99.  Pastor Jeff Clark of Hattiesburg's Venture Church said Graham was a humble man of integrity who would be missed. "Billy Graham is who all of us wanted to be like," said Clark, who once saw Graham in person while he was a seminary student in Dallas ...

    More >>

    A Hub City minister is reacting to the death of the Rev. Billy Graham, the most widely-heard Christian evangelist in history.   He died Wednesday morning at his home in Montreat, North Carolina at the age of 99.  Pastor Jeff Clark of Hattiesburg's Venture Church said Graham was a humble man of integrity who would be missed. "Billy Graham is who all of us wanted to be like," said Clark, who once saw Graham in person while he was a seminary student in Dallas ...

    More >>
  • New film documents life of civil rights pioneer Clyde Kennard

    New film documents life of civil rights pioneer Clyde Kennard

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 11:45 PM EST2018-02-22 04:45:47 GMT
    A new documentary about Clyde Kennard called, "Measure of Progress: The Clyde Kennard Story," premiered at the Lake Terrace Convention Center Wednesday night. Photo credit WDAM.A new documentary about Clyde Kennard called, "Measure of Progress: The Clyde Kennard Story," premiered at the Lake Terrace Convention Center Wednesday night. Photo credit WDAM.

    A new documentary about Hattiesburg civil rights pioneer Clyde Kennard premiered at the Lake Terrance Convention Center Wednesday night.   "Measure of Progress: The Clyde Kennard Story" documents Kennard's attempts at enrolling at the University of Southern Mississippi in the 1950's when it was a segregated Mississippi Southern College. He was turned down several times and ultimately was sent to prison on trumped up charges.  He died of cancer after be...

    More >>

    A new documentary about Hattiesburg civil rights pioneer Clyde Kennard premiered at the Lake Terrance Convention Center Wednesday night.   "Measure of Progress: The Clyde Kennard Story" documents Kennard's attempts at enrolling at the University of Southern Mississippi in the 1950's when it was a segregated Mississippi Southern College. He was turned down several times and ultimately was sent to prison on trumped up charges.  He died of cancer after be...

    More >>
  • Laurel to undergo $5 million water and sewer project

    Laurel to undergo $5 million water and sewer project

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 10:12 PM EST2018-02-22 03:12:32 GMT
    The City of Laurel is planning a $5 million water and sewer project to improve aging infrastructure. (Photo source: WDAM)The City of Laurel is planning a $5 million water and sewer project to improve aging infrastructure. (Photo source: WDAM)

    The City of Laurel undergoing a $5 million water and sewer project. WDAM looked at what's happening. Mayor Johnny Magee said, "The problem is Laurel is over 100 years old and the water and sewer lines are about the same age." Caving in and sprouting leaks, Mayor Johnny Magee said it's time for an infrastructure revamp in the city.  Magee said, "We are going to redo the water and sewer lines all the way from the flagpole on Central Avenue about two and a half mil...

    More >>

    The City of Laurel undergoing a $5 million water and sewer project. WDAM looked at what's happening. Mayor Johnny Magee said, "The problem is Laurel is over 100 years old and the water and sewer lines are about the same age." Caving in and sprouting leaks, Mayor Johnny Magee said it's time for an infrastructure revamp in the city.  Magee said, "We are going to redo the water and sewer lines all the way from the flagpole on Central Avenue about two and a half mil...

    More >>
Powered by Frankly