Descanso Pediatrics in La Canada Flintridge. "It's the creative part
of medicine, I like to think."
Now Rodarte will use that creativity to help find and treat
missing people in the Montrose area. Rodarte is one of two recent
graduates of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Academy who will join the
Montrose Search and Rescue Team.
Linda Daniels, a teacher for the Glendale Unified School District
who lives in La Crescenta, also graduated from the academy. Rodarte
and Daniels are probationary members of the search and rescue team
for the next year while they receive more training. Daniels is on
vacation and was unavailable for comment this week.
"We did a fund-raiser in October where we were looking for new
team members, and approximately 40 people showed up," Capt. Jay
Paneno said. "We ended up with these two."
Of those 40, only Rodarte and Daniels passed the sheriff's
background investigation, the team's requirements and the academy.
"I've always loved the outdoors and adventure-type stuff, and
being in medicine myself, I thought I could utilize my skills," said
Rodarte, who did not know about the team until seeing an
advertisement for the October meeting.
Rodarte, 34, has been interested in the outdoors since childhood,
when his father was a Boy Scout leader. As he got older, he moved on
to more adventurous outdoors activities such as rock climbing,
white-water rafting and mountain climbing.
He served as the team doctor on a nine-man expedition that climbed
Mt. Whitney, and he is planning an expedition up Mt. Kilimanjaro
"We had people getting altitude sickness and I was worried about
stroke symptoms," Rodarte said of the Mt. Whitney trip. "You just go
back to the basics. It's all about talking to the patient, examining
the patient, and utilizing what you have in the field with you."
In the Sheriff's Academy, Rodarte experienced adventures of a
different sort. Before the six-month class, he'd never fired a gun.
Now, he has been to a gun-cleaning party.
"I never imagined that one," Rodarte said.