26. NEIL VAN DYKE: THE MAN FOR THE RESCUE
For 35 years Neil Van Dyke’s day job was serving as president/owner/innkeeper of the Golden Eagle Resort in Stowe. But like a modern-day Clark Kent, his second job involved responding instantly when a call came in for help: to locate a missing hiker, to search for skiers lost after dark, or to retrieve a body from a cliff base. As Deputy Chief of Stowe Mountain Rescue, Van Dyke has helped save more lives than he can probably count. Stowe’s team, considered among the best in the country, has been called in to help with searches in the Adirondacks and beyond. In 2013, after state police failed to do a timely and thorough search for a missing trail runner in Addison County (who was later found dead from hypothermia) Van Dyke stepped into a new role as Search and Rescue Coordinator for the state of Vermont. We are all the safer for him.