Mississippi Lime Company’s (MLC) mine rescue team placed first at the 37th annual Missouri Regional Mine Rescue Contest, which took place in Rolla, Missouri at the Missouri University of Science and Technology’s experimental mine.

The competition, from September 30 to October 3, tested the teams on handling mine emergencies.

Twenty teams participated in this year’s competition.

Participants tackled a 75-minute problem on respirators, CPR and written exams that test first aid and technical experience on breathing gear and other instruments. The annual contest is known to many in the field as “mini nationals” because of its intensity and the training required to prepare for it.

“We’ve participated in this competition for 22 years, and this year is the first time we placed this high in all categories,” said Charlie Gegg, one of the team trainers. “Besides placing first overall, our team placed second in team trainer, first aid, technical and field.

“In addition to practicing monthly for competitions, each person puts in time to study all of the various areas involved in the training. We are very proud of our mine rescuers.”

Allen Schilli, who was selected to take the team trainer test for this competition, was inducted into the Missouri Mining Hall of Fame. He has more than 25 years of experience in mine rescue and 47 years working at MLC.

“We are extremely proud of Allen for all of his hard work, dedication, and mentorship to each of us over the years,” Charlie Gegg said.

This competition is Schilli’s last, as he plans to retire soon.

Mississippi Lime’s mine rescue team is made up of a group of volunteer employees at the Ste. Genevieve manufacturing site who are specially trained to deal with any incidents that may occur.

Team members are Schilli, Mike Wolf, Jesse Gegg, Jared Boland, Charlie Gegg, Zach Duncan, Kyle Clark, John Miller, and Pat Nichols.

(Information in a release from the Vandiver Group for Mississippi Lime Company.)