Serving as a Public Information Officer (PIO) for a wildfire complex at Big Cypress National Preserve (BICY) was more than just an assignment for Robyn Broyles - - it was a trip down memory lane. Broyles, a Fire Communication and Education Specialist for the Bureau of Indian Affairs at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, lived at BICY in the 1980’s when her father, Paul, was a Fire Management Officer there. More than 20 years later, Robyn returned as a PIO with the Southern Area Type 2 Incident Management Team. The Team was called in for the Oil Pad Fire Complex, which burned over 10,000 acres on the Preserve in June of 2011. For Broyles it was a homecoming.
Only about six years old when she was last at Big Cypress, Broyles foreshadowed her future. “I remember climbing with my sister, Andrea, on a big yellow fire engine used by my Dad for work.” At the Oil Pad Complex, Broyles worked out of a room in the Preserve’s headquarters building. “It still smells the same,” she observed.