CCCA raises funds for the Clark County K9 unit and funds the Clark County Mounted Search and Rescue Team

WILLARD Wis. (WEAU) – The Clark County Auxiliary began almost two years ago. Their goal is to raise funds to support the Clark County Sheriff’s Office K9 unit and to fund a fully volunteer mounted search and rescue team.

“The Citizen’s Auxiliary was started because the sheriff’s department really couldn’t fundraise for the k-9 unit and the horse-drawn search and rescue teams in particular,” the CCA president said, Deborah Esselman.

Rob Rinehart is Esselman’s brother-in-law and is part of the horse search and rescue team.

“My wife Mary-Ann is involved and we now have 11 members and two other potential candidates who have trained with us,” said Rinehart.

Rinehart says Clark County has 135,000 acres of public land and sometimes people get lost.

“They were looking for a better way to find lost people and things like that in the area,” Rinehart said. “It just appeared that maybe horses would be a good option for this. “

Michael English is a K9 manager in the Clark County Sheriff’s Office. He says his dog Arthur is good at his job, but adding horses helps cover more ground.

“Along the same lines, it’s a success or a failure,” English said. “It might follow a human scent and then find a deer trail, then all of a sudden we’re half a mile down the road when we’re supposed to go the other way.”

Rinehart says their team isn’t called often, which is a good thing. He says that thanks to the funding from the CCA, they are always ready.

“We quite like the helper,” Rinehart said. “They help us with the GPS equipment and things like that.”

Esselman’s sister and brother are also part of the horse search and rescue team. She says she enjoys being able to help the community together.

“I love to work with the community and help in any way,” Esselman said. “Being able to do it as a family is even more special. “

Rinehart says it’s gratifying to be able to lend a helping hand.

“When you’re home at night and go to bed at night and you’re with your family, maybe someone else isn’t,” Rinehart said. “It’s an opportunity to go out and help that. It’s pretty cool.

Esselman says volunteers are always needed to help with fundraising and anyone can sign up, even if you don’t live in Clark County.

Rinehart says there are certain requirements to join the horse-drawn search and rescue team, as well as a period of training.

“Each member should have their own horse, gear, trailer, truck,” Rinehart said.

The Clark County Citizens Auxiliary is holding a fundraising auction on December 4th. It will be held at Premier Auction Sales in Withee, Wisconsin.

To learn more about the CCCA and the Horse Search and Rescue Team, Click here.

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