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Geocachers Care – October 2010

The Accidental Geocaching Community

An accident inspires a Thank You from a Mom to the geocaching community

July of this year rates as the most memorable geocaching month yet for Chrissie and her kids. But it might not be for the reasons you think. Chrissie and her kids geocache under the name silvertipskids.  The Washington State, USA family prepared for GeoWoodstock and Groundspeak’s Lost & Found Celebration.  The Mega-Events were not just in the same weekend, but within driving distance of one another in Chrissie’s home state.  She expected to make wonderful memories but she never expected a single, terrifying moment would endear her family to the geocaching community forever.

It all started late in the day at GeoWoodstock. Chrissie says they family was pulling their car over to explore a giant geocaching ammo can.


Chrissie and Ryan

She says,”Ryan was very excited and unbuckled and said he was going to see what was in it.  Both his sister and I told him he needed to wait, but he took off running without waiting for [his sister] Kelci.”  Chrissie then watched the next moments in shock and disbelief.

She says, “Within seconds we saw a car hit Ryan and he flew into the grass on the side of the road.”

Geocachers who were witnesses quickly jumped into action.  Chrissie says, “By the time I got my car in park and ran across the street four people had jumped out of their cars and ran to check on Ryan.”

She says the geocachers not only called for help but gave first responders the precise latitude and longitude of the accident scene. Chrissie says, “I know many people called 911 and were able to give coordinates.  Thank goodness for these people and the fact that each one had a GPS unit, as I didn’t know where we were.”

Chrissie says the geocaching community then united to transform the confusion after the accident into order.  “A couple of nice ladies directed traffic around the commotion and my son was brought a blanket to put his head on. The very nice man who hit my son parked, and also stayed with Ryan the whole time.  I don’t know any of these people, and I didn’t at the time think to get their names, but they all stopped to help out, offered kind words, and kept the chaos down to a minimum while waiting for the medics to arrive.”

Ryan escaped the accident with little more than a bruise and a scrape on his ankle.  Chrissie says she and her family are left with something else though — a heart-felt appreciation for their fellow geocachers. “I am grateful for each person that called 911 and told them the location using latitude and longitude.  I am thankful for all who stopped to help Ryan that day.”

She says that the next day Ryan was well enough to go to Groundspeak’s Lost & Found Celebration.  Chrissie says, “Ryan stayed a little closer to me that day and was more aware of his surroundings. Even if something had happened at the event on Sunday as well, I know that we belong to a community that cares.”

Explore the good works of other geocachers. Read other “Geocachers Care” blog posts.