LONG BEACH - The American Red Cross Saturday night honored ten heroes at its annual Real Heroes Awards Banquet at Chautauqua Lodge.
A crowd of about 100 attended, with Sheriff John Didion serving as master of ceremonies.
The 10 heroes honored in 2004 are:
Education Hero Award
Hero: Linda Buchanan, teacher at Chauncey Davis Elem. School
Linda Buchanan, is a sixth- grade teacher at Chauncey Davis Elementary School, in South Bend. For nearly a dozen years Linda has engaged her students in service projects. The most anticipated project is the annual Holiday Store at the school, for which she collects items throughout the year, then involves all of the students in a program enabling them to shop for gifts for their loved ones.
"What makes this woman a hero is that she teaches the stuff that isn't written in books," wrote the nominator. "Responsibility for peers, compassion for one another, giving, helping, aiding another classmate, self-worth - these are the qualities and character-building lessions that empower people to be our future heroes - for every hero we see, there is a person who is quietly working in the background who helped make our heroes what they are today."
Emergency Intervention Hero Award
Hero: Shaun Harman, Long Beach Police
Shaun Harman, a Long Beach police officer, performed CPR on the evening of November 20, 2003, on a cardiac arrest victim. Shaun was the first to arrive and immediately began CPR until relieved by paramedics. The victim was transported, "code 3" to the hospital. In due time, the victim went home from the hospital and was doing well. Statistically, for every minute that a person goes without oxygen their chances of survival decrease by 10 percent. A quick and skillful CPR response increases a patient's chances for recovery.
"It is only through rapid intervention of life-saving techniques that persons are fortunate enough to survive a cardiac-arrest event," said nominator Ocean Park Fire Chief Tom O'Donohue.
Community Service Hero Award
Hero: Larry Clark, Pacific County Sheriff's Office
Larry Clark, of Ocean Park, has donated thousands of hours of service over the years as a reserve sheriff's deputy. His efforts have helped ensure the safety of Pacific County's senior citizen population, launched a litter pick-up program, and arranged security at high school events. Although retired, he still risks his life daily, working side-by-side with fulltime officers, responding to violent, dangerous situations.
"His dedication to serving our citizens is a wonderful example to all of us," said nominator Sheriff John Didion.
Law Enforcement Hero Award
Hero: Mark Svinth, WSP
Mark Svinth, of Naselle, is a Washington State Patrol Trooper. While on duty on November 21, 2002, he made a traffic stop at milepost 40 on Highway 101. The driver was a man who was suspected of murdering his wife four days earlier and was wanted by the Tacoma Police Department. Without backup, Trooper Svinth stopped, arrested and handcuffed the man.
Hero: Doug Knutzen, Pacific County Technical Rescue Team
Doug Knutzen, of Seaview is well known locally for his involvement in search and rescue operations. Representatives of the Kiwanis club, which nominated Doug, credit him for the many hours he has worked installing signs on the beach approaches. As a result, many tourists' lives have been saved due to quick response time to the beach locations. Doug has also been instrumental in many water rescues, according to a second nominator, including one related to a girls' near drowning in July 2003.
Medical Response Hero Award
Heroes: Greg McLeod, Doug Beardsley, Paul Pavolka, Pacific County Fire District No. 1
Greg McLeod, Doug Beardsley, Paul Pavolka and Charlotte Keesler were instrumental in saving the life of fire chief Thomas O'Donohue after he was stung by a bee on a motorcycle trip. Chief O'Donohue is severely allergic to bee stings and immediately went into anaphylactic shock. He carries injection pens containing epinephrine at all times. Greg, Doug, Paul and Charlotte worked to get the chief to a medical facility before his condition deteriorated.
Animal Rescue Hero Award
Hero: Luci Dryer
Luci Dryer, of Long Beach, is the proud owner of a dog with several guardian angels. Luci adopted Esther Williams, a German shepherd mix, after an unidentified Grays Harbor-based fishing boat spotted the dog swimming three miles off the Peninsula and plucked her from icy waters. The crew of the boat, who could not be identified, saved the dog's life by delivering her to the Grayland Veterinary Clinic. Once the exhausted and hungry dog was stabilized, she was transferred to the Willapa Veterinary Clinic in Raymond. Following additional care, the dog was taken to the South Pacific County Animal Shelter in Long Beach for adoption. Enter Luci Dryer, owner of Happy Tails dog grooming service, who heard about the lucky and wayward dog and has given her a good home.