Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mark and Nate

Are heading out to San Diego as I type.

Pray they fly safe. I know it seems a little over the top but I truly am worried about them. Before Denise died I wouldn't normally be this nervous. But since she died I don't think anything can shock me.

Anyhow, I'm so excited for Nathan and I'm very proud of him. Nathan, Mark, Dave Dignam of Key Agency and David Garofalo a North Port City Commissioner flew out there together to represent the Denise Amber Lee Foundation. They are going to the CalNENA convention where Nathan is slated to be the keynote speaker.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with NENA it stands for National Emergency Number Association. And the "Cal", of course, refers to California.

Many people in California have been in touch with Nathan and Mark since Denise's tragedy. We have received mail and emails from all over the world and as far away as Australia (thinking of you Mark S and Tracie H).

California's support has been overwhelming. Apparently they are doing all they can to continually improve their 9-1-1 system. Nathan's speech is to last close to 40 minutes along with an introductory video about Denise and what went wrong.

Nathan's been practicing his speech at our local church that seats 1,000. He believes he'll be speaking to 600 9-1-1 industry persons. I'm so proud of him and I know Denise would be too. He does so well. This is the kind of stuff that keeps him going.

The babies keep him going but..... this is quite different. We're all simply doing our best to see that Denise's tragedy didn't happen in vain.

The creep/murderer/rapist killed Denise but the flaws in our local 9-1-1 center directly led to her death. She would've been saved.

For those of you who don't know, Denise somehow managed to call 9-1-1 using the Michael King's cellphone. For 7 (seven) minutes Michael King didn't realize that 9-1-1 was on the line and they could hear Denise pretending as if she's talking to him. Saying things like "I can't see!" "Who are you?" "Please take me home to my babies. They are alone!" "My name is Denise Amber Lee" etc.... Then tragically he realized he couldn't find his phone and the call was abruptly ended. Because Denise had 9-1-1 on the cell phone for 7 minutes we believe she thought she was going to be found. Sadly, the technology that could have saved her is available but it's not being used. With more and more people using cell phones, we believe it's imperative they put inexpensive GPS units in all cell phones. The thing is it's not that expensive.

I've blogged enough about what happened in the Charlotte County's 9-1-1 center. That will all come out one day I'm sure. If you're interested and don't know the details I've posted them previously. They messed up royally in many many ways. They had a caller on the line giving cross streets but they didn't dispatch a car! Oh, I won't go there. And they seemingly ignored 3 crucial BOLOs. (Be On the Look Outs).

So, yes, we believe that better training, better pay for a better quality personnel, better standards and using leading edge technology in our 9-1-1 centers will definitely save lives. There are too many tragedies.

Right now Florida residents are paying 50 cents per month on their cell phone bills for 9-1-1 service. Gee, who wouldn't pay a $1 more? $12 more a year for life insurance.

Also, the general public needs to know what works and what doesn't work.

Now I'm writing a speech. After he gives his speech on Tuesday, I'll ask him if I can print it here for y'all to see.

I'm going to miss Mark. I don't like being without him. I miss him already:o(