Grand Canyon ranger earns national award

GRAND CANYON - Grand Canyon National Park Supervisory Park Ranger Lisa Hendy was awarded the National Park Service's 2011 Harry Yount National Park Ranger Award on Oct. 26 for excellence in the field of rangering.

The award is named after the nation's first park ranger (hired in Yellowstone National Park in 1880) and is the highest honor that can be bestowed on a park ranger.

According to the award nomination submitted by Grand Canyon National Park's Chief Ranger Bill Wright, Hendy has earned it.

"Ranger Hendy is one of those rangers who can be sent to any call," Wright said. "(She) is one of that rare breed who simply excel at every aspect of rangering."

Wright said that on any given day, Hendy could be found rappelling over the edge to stabilize a patient, working with the park's special response team to do a building sweep, responding with the structural fire engine to a burning RV, providing advanced life support care as a paramedic, being short-hauled into a victim on the river, or patrolling the back country - checking permits, stirring toilets, assessing archeological sites, and the list goes on.

Hendy was born in Chattanooga, Tenn., and attended Auburn University. She has worked in Yosemite, Rocky Mountain, Arches and Yellowstone National Parks, coming to the Grand Canyon in 2004.