Published on May 03, 2023

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Scott Lee, 62 years old of Prescott, is a former Yavapai County Search and Rescue Back County Unit, who assisted the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office for over 25 years. He began in April 1994 as a founding member of the short haul team, was a member of the first Swift Water certification class and was certified in technical rope rescues. Scott tracked those who were lost and rendered first aid to untold numbers of hikers over the years. He has also been instrumental in recovering those who have lost their lives, making sure to bring them back to their families. This good-hearted, dedicated, and compassionate work was done as an unpaid volunteer.

Scott was forced to retire from the Backcountry Unit a few years ago when was diagnosed with a disease that requires a kidney transplant. He has been on the transplant list for over 26 months, hoping to find a matching organ donor. A transplant will allow Scott to resume work and recreation with his family and friends. However, he needs our help to expedite finding that right donor. So, we at YCSO want to spread the word about the National Kidney Registry and what you can do to possibly help a man who has selflessly helped so many others.


To learn more about Scott and his quest, you can find information here: Scott Lee Needs a Kidney |      Can You Help? (nkr.org)

1. Get screened be a potential kidney organ donor with National Kidney Register. You can help them by becoming a living donor. Find Out if You're Qualified to Donate a Kidney | National Kidney Registry

2. If you are not able to donate or donating is not the path for you, you can share Scott’s need for a kidney on social media, in your local community, at church, etc., to help them find a donor.  Help Someone Find a Kidney | National Kidney Registry



About 15 years ago Scott and other members of the Yavapai County Search and Rescue Back County Unit were called out to find a miner who had been missing for 3 days. He was reported to have significant medical issues that required medicine that he did not have with him. It was April, so as is standard in Yavapai County, the weather was unpredictable and could change at a moment’s notice, playing a part in this story.

Scott was able to locate the man’s vehicle at the end of a road at the top of the Bradshaw Mountains. The miner’s truck had clearly gotten stuck and Scott was able to track the man’s footprints from the truck along the ridge, down the mountain and toward Dewey. Scott and other rescuers made their way down a steep embankment, sliding the whole way. About an hour later they reached the canyon at the bottom and found the miner under a bush violently shivering from the cold.

The rescuers built a fire and warmed him up before making the decision to carry the man in a basket the mile or so toward Dewey rather than try to navigate back up the mountain They had to make a human chain to pass the basket due to the difficult terrain. About 3 hours after initially starting the rescue, around midnight, it began to rain and the temperature dropped significantly. The rescuers stopped for a second time to build a fire to warm themselves as well as the miner. After they rested and warmed up, they continued on but an hour later the rain turned to snow, forcing a the third fire of the night.

By daylight, Scott and the others had made the one and half mile trip, carrying a grown man through rain and snow, down a treacherous mountain and through slippery and dangerous terrain, to a waiting ambulance that was able to treat the miner. A few members of the rescue team were also treated for


When asked why this story stuck out for him over his long career, and his answer was “Because we saved him”.

I think that says it all.


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