OTE - Oregon Travel Experience

When family time is sacrificed for helping others

Posted on: December 3rd, 2012 by Madeline MacGregor in News & Press, Roadways and Waysides | 6 Comments

Finished with her long shift, OTE rest area maintenance technician Danielle “Dani” Hawthorne sank gratefully into the seat of her partner’s car. Chatting about the day’s events, they left Dani’s workplace (the Baldock rest area near Wilsonville) and eased into heavy traffic on northbound Interstate 5 several minutes later.

A few car lengths in front of their vehicle, the couple spotted a motorist weaving in and out of traffic and in general, driving erratically. Dani and her partner speculated the driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and followed at a safe distance. Dani used her mobile to phone 911 and report a possible DUI.

As Dani hung up from emergency dispatch, she observed the unstable driver enter Baldock’s northbound rest area. The vehicle swerved, ran over a curb, narrowly missed a pedestrian, and halted abruptly.

Dani and her partner pulled next to the stopped vehicle, and Dani ran over to see if she could help. The confused driver told Dani that he was in the middle of a diabetic episode. She asked him if sugary food might work to stabilize him. The driver nodded, and after contacting emergency dispatch for medical support, Dani was back in minutes carrying donuts. She waited with the driver until emergency medical technicians arrived.

Rest area technicians are responsible for much of the hidden magic that is required to maintain a rest area in tip-top shape. A technician’s many thankless tasks involve cleaning, sanitizing, and stocking public restrooms, mowing lawns, cutting brush, emptying trashcans, and keeping public walkways clear of debris.

OTE knows that without employees such as Dani, our mission to serve the traveling public would be hollow indeed. Oregon Travel Experience salutes Dani Hawthorne, for her commitment to the safety of Oregon’s motorists and for her daily work. Dani’s participation in the welfare of an unknown motorist occurred after her official shift had already ended. Thank you, Dani. In sacrificing your own family time, you ensured the health and well-being of a fellow Oregonian.



Erin Hawthorne

- Comment left on: December 3rd, 2012 at 2:39 pm

That’s My Daughter, Her Father and I are so Proud of Her!!!

Madeline MacGregor

- Comment left on: December 3rd, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Erin, thanks for letting us know. Your daughter is a peach and we’re so glad she works for us.

Meredith Gossett

- Comment left on: December 3rd, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Typical Dani! Helping others whenever she can! She’s a great person and I’m so glad to know her!

Paula Stewart

- Comment left on: December 3rd, 2012 at 4:40 pm

Iv know this sweet girl for years, I’m proud that she has not changed …

Curt Smith

- Comment left on: December 5th, 2012 at 5:02 am

Dani and I work together on the same crew. This isn’t the only time I’ve seen her go above and beyond at work. She’s a great worker and even a better person!


- Comment left on: December 5th, 2012 at 10:33 am

I work in the OTE Salem office and just love hearing stories about the awesome employees we have out there in the Rest Areas lending a helping hand to those who need help. Dani, I hope to meet you some day. You endure hard work and definitely deserve all the amazing comments 🙂

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