On Thursday morning the Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross along with local and regional officials honored those that have went above and beyond the call of duty, with the 18th Annual Heroes Breakfast at the SOMC Friends Center.
Paul Price of Pike County served as master of ceremonies for the annual event.
“Heroes come in many shapes and sizes, I’m sure we all know and have our own everyday heroes that’s apart of our lives,” Price said to those in attendance. “This years heroes breakfast is in honor of former board chairman Marcia Sanderlin.”
According to program information, Marcia became actively involved with the local Red Cross in 1999 and served as Board Chair for three years. She led the chapter during the September 11th attacks and due to her service for the American Red Cross she was selected to carry the Olympic Torch through Portsmouth for the 2002 Olympics in Utah. She passed away earlier this year.
Also addressing those in attendance was Joe Harris, American Red Cross Senior Director of Finance at National Headquarters.
Harris was the Community Executive of the Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross while Sanderlin was board chairwoman. He shared with those in attendance about his experience with Sanderlin.
“Not long after the Olympics Marcia confided in me she planing to retire and move. I wondered what was going to happen to the chapter and I wondered what was going to happen to me. She said, ‘I know when you swim, you hold your nose and only swim with one hand,” Harris said. “She said, ’ you’ve got to let go of the shore line, you’ve got to start swimming toward the unknown, because that’s where the best swims happen.”
Harris said Sanderlin always took an interest in what he was doing.
“I know very few things for good, I know because of Marcia Sanderlin and her work with the Red Cross, I know when a blood donor rolls up their sleeve to donate, it’s for good. I know, when an army soldier gets that communication, during an emergency, it’s because of her support. I know that when a student in this area learns preparedness through a pillow case or a puppet, it’s for good. I know when a donor writes a check to the Red Cross, it’s for good. I know when CPR is administered and another birthday is celebrated, it’s for good,” Harris said. “I know, when we dance with the stars, it’s because service matters. I know that when a family rushes from a burning home into the arms of a Red Cross Volunteer, it’s because of her faith in this organization.”
Those presented with Hero Awards include Leeann Puckett, Adams County Hero, Kristina Elo-Monroe, CPR/AED/First Aid Hero, Kristina Elo-Monroe. Fire/Preparedness Hero, Sergeant Josh Carver, Patrolman Bryan Jordan and Steve Hamilton, New Boston Village Administrator. Jackson County Community Hero, General Mills. Lawrence County Hero, Sergeant Jamie Pruitt, Captain Pamela Wagner and Officer Steve Breeding.
Dale King was presented the Military/Veteran Hero award, Pike County Hero Award was presented to Judy Dixon, Scioto County Community Hero was given to Susan O’Neill and Mary Rase. The Wellness Hero Award was presented to The Scioto County Health Coalition and Regina Tipton.
Each year at the heroes breakfast the Marcia Sanderlin Award is given to a supporter of the organization with volunteer hours or financial support.
This year the Marcia Sanderlin Award was given to two people. The award recipients include Estel Ottney according to award information, Estel embodies the spirit of volunteer service. Estel’s contribution to the Red Cross and the Ohio River Valley are immeasurable. She is an engine that helps support the American Red Cross fulfill its mission.
Also receiving the Marcia Sanderlin Award is Tom Frazier, according to award information, Tom embodies the spirit of the American Red Cross in one word… selflessness. Tom gives of his time without hesitation. He answers the call and responds to those in need after a disaster all around our six county territory. In the last year Tom has responded to 60 home fires in the Red Cross service area. Tom has deployed to 40 national disasters during his 10 years as a Red Cross Disaster Volunteer.
For more information about the Ohio River Valley American Red Cross, visit 1801 Robinson Ave., in Portsmouth, call 740-354-3293, or find them on Facebook.
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101 ext. 1933 or @WayneAllenPDT on Twitter.