More than just another school day…

Today’s post comes from Master Chief Petty Officer Aaron Zimmer, officer-in-charge of Coast Guard Station Toledo, Ohio. Master Chief Zimmer has spearheaded a program that delivers ice safety messages to elementary school students throughout the northwest Ohio area.

From the Master Chief:

Master Chief Petty Officer Aaron Zimmer, officer-in-charge of Coast Guard Station Toledo, addresses fourth grade students at Margaretta Elementary School during ice safety training, Dec. 15, 2010. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class George Degener.

Master Chief Petty Officer Aaron Zimmer, officer-in-charge of Coast Guard Station Toledo, addresses fourth grade students at Margaretta Elementary School during ice safety training, Dec. 15, 2010. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class George Degener.

After three young boys went through the ice and drowned on Jan. 24, 2010, the North Central Ohio Educational Service Center, Fremont City Schools, Lindsey Volunteer Fire Department, Sandusky County Commissioners, Rice Township Trustees, and the Sandusky County Sheriff’s Office formed the Sandusky County Ice and Water Safety Committee.

The goal of this group was to take steps to prevent another tragic event.

The group began planning an educational outreach program for local schools and was responsible for placing a life ring and throw line along the river where the boys fell through the ice.

Soon, signs will be going up along the river warning of the dangers of thin ice and moving water.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Levine, Master Chief Petty Officer Aaron Zimmer and Petty Officer 1st Class John Curtis, from Coast Guard Station Toledo, Ohio, help a student volunteer from Margaretta Elementary School dress out in Coast Guard ice rescue gear, Dec. 15, 2010. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class George Degener

Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Levine, Master Chief Petty Officer Aaron Zimmer and Petty Officer 1st Class John Curtis, from Coast Guard Station Toledo, Ohio, help a student volunteer from Margaretta Elementary School dress out in Coast Guard ice rescue gear, Dec. 15, 2010. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class George Degener

Originally, Fremont schools were targeted, but more schools throughout the county requested the presentation.

Stations Toledo and Marblehead, Ohio, supported by Marine Safety Unit Toledo and the Lindsey Volunteer Fire Department, combined to provide the ice safety presentation to 28 schools and reached roughly 7,600 students, from kindergarten through sixth grade.

Click Here for official Coast Guard video of Master Chief Zimmer’s presentation at Margarretta Elementary School, Dec. 15, 2010.