Fish and Game reservists from eastern Idaho are to be honored by Blue Cross of Idaho in Boise September 27.
Blue Cross of Idaho has acknowledged active reservists Wendell Dunn, Pocatello, and Frank and Lucille Columbo, Ovid, as Ageless Heroes. The awards celebrate individuals who find ways to good health in mind, body, and spirit at every life stage.
Dunn, 69, a pharmacist, is a reservist/volunteer retired in 1988. "I decided to volunteer for Fish and Game because of my love of the outdoors and the desire to give something back to fish and wildlife. Volunteering gave me a chance to learn new and exciting things," Dunn said.
Dunn has volunteered almost weekly with the Fish and Game's Southeast Region program. He has donated more than 200 hours of his time each year in a variety of projects involving wildlife habitat restoration, waterfowl surveys and banding, teaching youth about fishing and the outdoors, and other activities.
Regional Supervisor Dexter Pitman, said "Wendell has a strong desire to be active and a most wonderful, upbeat attitude. His interest and willingness to take on new experiences has had a tremendous impact on wildlife resources and other people in Southeast Idaho."
The Columbos, Lucille, 76, and Frank, 80, are active volunteers in the hunter education program having taught more than 85 Montpelier area hunter education students and volunteered more than 915 hours. Their efforts began in 1997.
"We wanted to do something productive and worthwhile the rest of our lives, so we decided to get involved in teaching outdoor ethics and hunter safety," Lucille Columbo said.
Besides hunter education, the Columbos have volunteered to help with other wildlife conservation and management activities such as tranquilizing and relocating troublesome moose, trapping and radio-collaring mule deer, and helping their neighbors fence stored crops from hungry deer and elk in winter. Pitman said, "The vitality and vigor of Frank and Lucille are incredible. I have a devil of a time keeping up with Frank when its spring bitterbrush planting time on the steep hills around Montpelier. Frank and Lucille are a joy to work with."
"These folks are truly inspirational people. They possess a deeply rooted inner commitment to Idaho's wildlife and fish resources. They show a dedication to accomplishing good things for other Idahoans," Pitman said.