In July of this year, CCH posted a
Thanks for working here Thursday post about Denny Bohne, CCH Paramedic and the Southern Campbell County Emergency
Medical Services (EMS) coordinator in Wright, Wyoming. Posts about employees
always do well on social media, but
this post really blew it out of the water—more than 39 people left comments,
more than 40 shared it, and hundreds gave the post a thumbs up. But the
even greater thing is that we heard from people who Denny has helped,
“Pretty sure he saved my bacon during a bad allergic reaction! Phenomenal
paramedic and really made me feel comfortable and safe,” posted
Steve Jen Corbett.
“I am a Registered Nurse at a level 2 trauma center in Reno, Nevada,
and I wouldn’t be here without Denny,” chimed in Shawn Petersen.
After seeing these, and many more comments roll in, staff at the CCH
Emergency Medical Services department—who already knew Denny was a great colleague, mentor
and friend—decided to make sure he was recognized for what he really
is, a CCH Legend.
For those who don't know, CCH defines a Legend as, “those people
who have left an indelible impression on our minds because of their deeds
and actions. Ongoing demonstration of hard work, compassion, and a reputation
for greatness make someone a legend.”
A very visible part of our organization, the EMS department cares for the
sick and injured through prevention, response, intervention, and transport
to a medical facility. Every day, our EMS crews are called upon to help
others through one of what may be the most frightening times of their lives.
“Denny is such a great leader and mentor,” says colleague Colleen
Long, CCH Paramedic, and an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Basic student
of Denny’s. “When I went to paramedic school, it was because
of him. He drove me to be a very good and informed paramedic. I’m
grateful for him.”
Denny came to CCH in July 1998 after graduating paramedic school in May,
and he’s been serving the Wright community since 2000. He was born
and raised in Reeder, North Dakota, and had spent most of his life farming
and ranching there. When he was working in Hettinger, North Dakota as
a jailer, a good friend told him that he’d make a good EMT. So in
his late 30s, Denny joined her class and become an EMT. And at 40, Denny
became a paramedic.
“I love to care for people. In fact, I’ve been picking up and
caring for people and animals most of my life,” says Denny. “I’ve
started numerous IVs in cattle and gave calves CPR before I was giving
CPR to people.” He also recounts stories of riding motorcycles in
his youth, and helping strangers who had wrecked and needed care get to
the hospital. He also remembers a time when he was on a lake near Lemon,
South Dakota, and a man showed up at his camp who had wrecked his boat,
so Denny rushed him to the hospital as well.
As a paramedic, Denny has learned that he should not go anywhere without
an ambulance when someone has a medical question. “As a small town
medic, people will call you up and ask you to check on their mom. Or,
they will stop by your house on the weekend and ask you if they should
take their sick kiddo to the hospital. I’ve just learned that if
someone has a medical question, I will likely need all of my tools with
me,” he says.
Denny certainly has a knack for caring for people when they are likely
experiencing their worst day—and comforting them while also making
them feel better. And caring for the tight-knit community of Wright means
Denny is frequently caring for his friends, loved ones and neighbors.
“In the town of Wright, there are very few people who do not know
Denny,” says another EMT Basic student Chad Reid, who is now a Paramedic
at the CCH EMS base in Wright. “He’s always provided superior
patient care, and he has built a lot of relationships with the people
in the community.”
“Denny loves to be part of the community,” says Heather Springer,
EMT-I, who was also taught by Denny. “He loves teaching, and sharing
his knowledge. He is a great teacher, and he leads by example.”
Denny takes his father-figure role at the bases in Wright and Gillette
seriously. “As a mentor you have to share your experiences. They
want to understand your knowledge of a situation and compare it with what
they have done so that they can enhance their patient care. And, I also
learn from them—a paramedic should never stop learning,” says Denny.
Denny has also developed classes and kits to help keep his community better
informed of what to do in an emergency. Denny started a bike helmet program
in Wright and would give away free bicycle helmets, have kids go through
a bike rodeo and talk safety to the kids. And he has given talks to students
in the Wright Driver’s Education Classes for nearly 15 years. Colleen
has taken this concept and introduced it to Boy Scout Troops in the area,
helping them to learn about first aid and earn badges. And, according
to Chad, Denny developed the idea for taking care of bystanders by creating
a special kit for them to help protect bystanders from exposing themselves
to blood or other fluids while helping during an emergency.
“It provided a great need for protecting the public. It also gave
important information, and phone numbers that one might need after helping
or witnessing a traumatic incident. We still use these today, and I have
no doubt that we have helped multiple bystanders with them,” Chad said.
Denny served on the
Wright Town Council, and said he enjoyed his time on the Council as he learned a lot about
the community. He’s recently joined the Northeast Wyoming Critical
Incident Stress Management team, and looks forward to working with those
involved with the team.
Denny has been with CCH for the last 18 years, and he’s starting
to toss around the idea of retirement.
“I work with an outstanding crew of medics,” says Denny. “And
now it’s their time to shine.”
Denny, thank you for being there for our patients during a very traumatic
and scary time in their lives. Thank you for your compassionate care,
your commitment to educating exceptional paramedics and for keeping our
community safe. You have left a permanent impression at CCH and in Campbell
County, Wyoming. Congratulations.