Letter to the Editor: Tusayan, a town united | Williams-Grand Canyon News

Having lived in the Grand Canyon for 20 years, I have met great people and had great experiences.

One thing that impresses me is the cross-community support. It always amazes me how the people of Tusayan band together to help others in times of need. This happens on a level no other community has ever experienced.

Last month, the Rotary Club of Grand Canyon provided financial support for the Tusayan Fire District (TFD) to provide CPR training to the Grand Canyon Unified School District. This training is now mandatory for graduates. This is just one example of how multiple communities and his partners work together to provide services and solutions to their residents.

TFD has benefited from working with numerous agencies, companies and community members. Our previous collaborations are too numerous to list here, but it’s important to recognize them.

• The Town of Tusayan should, first and foremost, be recognized for its generous and continuous support to the fire district. The support of the town and Tusayan residents through the IGA has made TFD’s daily operations possible. This includes significant funding for staffing, as well as a much-needed fire truck replacement vehicle due for delivery in August.

• The Tusayan Sanitation District plays countless roles in supporting Tusayan’s infrastructure with the town and TFD and snow removal, and is also the most important water source for hydrants and firefighting. Districts mobilized water trucks/tender trucks in the event of field or structure fires away from hydrants. They were always there to help when we had any issues with the water supply.

• The Grand Canyon Unified School District works with TFD to provide training and opportunities for students to become either volunteers or firefighter/responders. The school has provided materials for fire drills and announced TFD events. Recently, Superintendent Yost came up with a solution that would allow TFD firefighters to conduct the mandatory “puck test” on the only flat surface in the Grand Canyon, the school’s athletic field.

• The Grand Canyon Plaza Hotel (Anne, Louie, Bob and Mario) has made countless contributions over the years, providing assistance with emergency and planned maintenance of the TFD Station and TFD Residences.

• Numerous local businesses have repeatedly supported TFD over the years through donations, fundraising, facilities, classes and training meals. These include Big-E Steakhouse & Saloon, Holiday Inn, IMAX, McDonald’s, Red Feather, Run Tucson, Texaco Gas Station/Food Mart, We Cook Pizza, Zantella and Delaware North Corporation.

• The National Park Service, NPS Dispatch, and NPS Law Enforcement Agencies have provided mutual assistance in emergency response, mutual training, and other events. The NPS 911 Dispatch Center enables all emergency response in Tusayan.

• The Forest Service has provided expertise and resources in wildfire, mitigation, GIS and training.

• Grand Canyon food pantries and local churches have responded to individual crises.

• The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office has provided assistance for community events as well as all emergencies, including wildfires and medical care.

• Coconino County and Coconino County Health and Human Services provide Tusayan services, immunizations, emergency planning and support, and more.

• The Arizona Department of Transportation and Grand Canyon National Park Airport have responded to highway accidents, snow removal, mutual response efforts, and drills.

• North Country HeathCare provides monthly mobile medical service vans for Tusayan residents in TFD.

• High Country Fire and Rescue responds as quickly as the Fire Department adjacent to the south. Valle residents and anyone driving Highway 64 can prove HCF&R and TFD compliance.

• Residents are doing everything in their power to support all of this.

The actual “town of Tusayan” government has worked with nearly all of the above organizations and many more. Credit here goes to the council, mayor, town manager and staff. In addition, the town has developed strong relationships with the Grand Canyon South Rim Chamber and Tourism Authority and NPS in general. One great example is the Ranger Radar Lanes that help preserve the uniquely dark skies of Tusayan and the Grand Canyon.

The Town of Tusayan is working toward many other goals, including a sports complex, Tusayan Community Health Service, improvements to the town’s food pantry, and other projects.

Clearly, it is impossible to list all the organizations that have worked together here in Tusayan, and I apologize for those I have left out. Many residents and guests never get the chance to see the behind-the-scenes efforts and contributions that make Tusayan what it is.

Last week, I heard some comments like, “Tusayan has worked on more projects to improve its community than any other town in Coconino County.” Someone said to me today, “This town is family.”

I can confidently say that the cooperation and support between all the organizations and people in Tusayan is the best I have seen in 20 years.

Thank you to everyone who made Tusayan what he is.

Greg Brush

Deputy Mayor of Tusayan

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