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Kauai rescuers honored for saving 121 stranded hikers

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 4:51 a.m. HST, Aug 21, 2014

A Kauai Fire Department rescue team was recently recognized at the 2014 International Association of Fire Chiefs Conference in Dallas for saving more 100 stranded hikers in Kalalau Valley in April. 

Firefighters Bryan Doo, Aaron Hawthorne, Adam Hussey, Capt. Gordon Tamura and Air 1 rescue pilot Clifton Cates were honored with the International Association of Fire Chiefs/Motorola Solutions' Benjamin Franklin Fire Service Award for Valor for rescuing 121 hikers.

The award honors firefighters for their dedication to duty to saving lives. 

On April 6, the rescue team responded to hikers trapped by raging stream waters in Hanakapiai. That evening the rescue crew rescued nearly two dozen hikers who could not cross the stream due to dangerous conditions. The crew resumed their effort the following day, airlifting hikers out of the valley, three to four at a time. 

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