PDT Staff Writer
The Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross held its 14th annual Heroes Celebration at the SOMC Friends Center on Thursday night. The event was aimed at honoring heroes throughout the communities of Scioto and Pike counties.
“Heroes are those who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences,” said Mary Arnzen, Director of the Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross.
During the event, Paul O’Neil was given the Blood Hero Award. Dr. Tracy Murray was given the Community Hero award. Sharleen Hemminger was given this year’s fire hero award. The Fire Department hero award was given to the Nile Township Volunteer Fire Depart, Otway Fire Department, Porter Township Fire Department, Rush Township Fire Department, Vernon Township, and in memory of the late Lt. Rocky Dunkin. The Fire Department Award was also given to William “Bill” Arthur Lynn, Terry Fannin, Gene “Bus” Ballengee, and Marc Charles.
This year’s First Aid Hero award was given to Darrell Logan and Darryl Hankins. This year’s Good Samaritan Hero is Rachel Passarella. This year’s Humanitarian Hero is Dr’s George Pettit and Nathan Bennington.
This year’s Military Hero is American Legion Post 142. This year’s Pet Hero was awarded to Betty Bahner. This year’s Pike County Hero is Geo-Tech Polymers and Hadsell Chemical. This year’s Wellness Hero award was given to Southern Ohio Medical Center.
This year’s recipient of the Marcia Sanderlin Hero was awarded to Ann Jewett. According to the Red Cross, “Marcia Sanderlin exemplified true dedication and compassion for our chapter. In honor of Marcia, this award is given out every year to a volunteer or paid staff of the Chapter who has gone above and beyond the call of duty.”
Jewett has served as a board member of the Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross since July of 2010. She has organized a new annual fundraiser for the chapter titled Jingle Bell Jog which takes place the first Saturday in December. This past December’s event was successful and profited early $4,000 and a goal has been set to attain $10,000 from this event in the future.
The guest speaker for this year’s Hero Celebration was Michael Hingson, a blind survivor of the Sept. 11. 2001, attack on the World Trade Center. He is now a public speaker and travels across the country telling of his experiences.
“Heroes come in many shapes and sizes. Heroes are interesting creatures and you never know where you are going to find one. Heroes are all around us, Heroes are like you and me. I think anyone who is truly a hero is someone who doesn’t think they are a hero, they just go about doing whatever it is they have to do,” Hingson said. “The result of their actions make them heroes. They are a hero because they likely did something that took them out of their comfort zone, they were a hero because they did something they did not expect they would ever have to do. But, they were prepared to make whatever sacrifice was necessary to step into an unexpected situation and do what had to be done.”
For more information about Michael Hingson, visit his website at michaelhingson.com/newsite.
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 203, or firstname.lastname@example.org.