EVERETT, Wash. - Snohomish County Paramedic Chris Tompkins is headed out once again. He's been to Haiti, this time he's packing for Japan. He's got enough essentials to hold him over for as long as he and his team are needed.

As we've saw in Katrina, sometimes supremely capable first-world nations need a little help, he said.

Thedoctors, nurses and paramedicswith International Medical Assistance Teamwill hit the ground once they get there, see what's needed, and go from there.

We'll be looking at infrastructure, sanitation and hygiene, perhaps body recovery, he said.

World Vision Communications Manager Casey Calamusa savored a few moments with his wife before heading out.

The devastation is huge and so it's going to be a long relief effort on the ground, he said.

Calamusa is packing for a two-week stay. He'll be relaying important information to relief workers.

I'll also be writing stories and chronicling what World Visionis doing and I may be going into the disaster area to help, he said.

Tompkins expects they'll be many trips to Japan after this one. He is committed to the lifesaving mission for the long haul.

It's a hard thing to explain how rewarding it is to insert yourself into a situation where you can make that kind of a difference, he said.

Tompkins and his other team members are paying for their own flights and using their vacation time to help.

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