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Orange County E911 Center “Tree of Life” mural recognizes dispatchers

The Orange County Emergency Communications Center is excited to announce the addition of a “Tree of Life” mural, to recognize dispatchers for the lifesaving measures they provide day after day.

Like leaves on a tree, communications officers provide a critical canopy of protection and assistance in the chain of emergency response, according to a release from Orange County.

To give these hard-working individuals the support and recognition they deserve, Chris Cord, ECC Director, commissioned a “Tree of Life” mural in the 911 Center, according to the release. The mural will “come to life” as communications officers place leaves or birds with names and a date on the tree, signifying a life saved or a baby delivered.

The first leaves were placed on the tree by Communications Officers Greg Bedinger, Abbe Smithson, Cassandra Keaton and Justin Lynch. Each instructed a caller to perform CPR that ultimately saved a life this year.

More than just art on the wall, the “Tree of Life” is a morale booster and motivator, the release states.

“No two leaves on the tree will be alike. They will each represent a call, a person, an event or a gesture of good that signifies the communications officer’s knowledge and experience giving shape and form to 911 communications.

“The tree will help demonstrate to responders, the public and other dispatchers the incredible work that is done every day in the community,” the release states.

Emergency communications personnel work behind the scenes, making them less visible than other emergency services, said Cord.

“However, as the first, first responders, the instructions we give callers are the initial step in potentially life-saving measures,” he said. “This tree will serve as a reminder not only for our staff of the importance of the work they do but will also educate visitors in our role in public safety.”