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Search and rescue crew takes over KMTI radio on April Fools'

By Sam Penrod | Posted - Apr 1st, 2013 @ 9:19pm


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SANPETE COUNTY — It's a very good cause brought to the public by some very bad radio: April Fools' Day is Jeep Posse Day on KMTI, where Sanpete County Search and Rescue takes over the station for an all-day radiothon.

Many charitable organizations take to the airwaves to raise money from time to time, but only on KMTI will you hear an entire radio station turned over to the rescue crew to raise money for their work.

For 35 years, Kerry Deuel has hosted the Jeep Posse Day radiothon.

"You can't take these guys serious, running the radio station," Deuel said. "These guys are not guys that want to be on the radio."

There are moments when listening is downright painful, like during dead air or after an awkward turn of phrase.

"It's not scripted; we don't know what they are going to say," said KMTI owner Doug Barton.

"We do provide an engineer, but they do all the talking," Barton said. "They read commercials, they do the news, (and) they do the weather."

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While the crew obviously has no future in broadcasting, they routinely save lives. The volunteers are an invaluable resource to the sheriff.

"Whether it is people lost in the backcountry or injured (in) ATV crashes, lost snowmobilers — whatever the case may be, they rely on our search and rescue, and our search and rescue comes through," said Sanpete County Sheriff Brian Nielson.

That commitment and that risk they take to save others is why people call in pledges all day long. After all, you never know if someday they may be coming to rescue you.

"We encourage everyone in Utah to come down to Sanpete County and have a good time," Deuel said. "Just be careful so you don't need the search and rescue when you are here."

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