For Ralph McCracken, retirement from the US Army Reserves in 2006 didn’t last long. After a deployment to Kuwait and 28 years of service, the retired lieutenant colonel found himself at the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department. After moving through several positions there, he found himself working in emergency preparedness. Part of that preparedness position was becoming familiar with the health and medical coordinator position with the Lexington Emergency Management Operations Center.
It’s now one of his major responsibilities at the health department.
“As the ESF 8 Health and Medical Lead Coordinator, I am also the liaison between the department operations center at the Health Department and the DEM EOC. I am also responsible to ensure that the health department has multiple EOC Coordinators and that they are trained and ready to fulfill the duties of EOC Coordinator,” said McCracken.
In 2016, McCracken was faced with heart surgery. After successful procedures and rehabilitation, he decided to share his experiences by joining a volunteer group called Mended Hearts at the UK Medical Center. It’s a group of people who have undergone heart surgery who can help others waiting for similar surgeries or those who are recovering. He’s now an Accredited Visitor who can talk with patients in the cardiac units.
Ralph and his wife Kathy have been married for 33 years. They have a son, Ralph and daughter, Kaera, along with a Shi Tzu named Toki. Ralph and Kathy are expecting their first grandchild in December.