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Red Cross Will Honor Heroes at Hartford Event March 28

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Don't miss this inspiring event honoring local heroes!

FARMINGTON, CONN, March 19, 2013 – The American Red Cross Connecticut Chapter will honor local heroes at a breakfast celebration on March 28 at the Hartford Marriott Downtown, located next to the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford. The breakfast is sponsored by Wells Fargo.

Awards are being given to nine recipients whose good deeds or community service made a difference for others. Honorees this year include an Army Reservist, three Firefighters, a State Representative, two Good Samaritans, a Law Enforcement official, a special group of blood donors and a very intuitive dog. They are from Baltic, Coventry, East Hartford, Hartford, New Hartford, Portland and Wolcott. The blood donors being honored come from across the region.

The honorees are being recognized at the annual American Red Cross Community Heroes Breakfast Celebration on Thursday, March 28, in Hartford at the Hartford Marriott Downtown Hotel. The breakfast will begin at 7:30 a.m. Registration is at 7:15 a.m. Tickets to the event are $35 and must be purchased in advance by calling Laura Campbell at (203) 874-2532 ext. 16 or by e-mailing her at

American Red Cross Connecticut and Rhode Island Region CEO Mario Bruno said the event honors “people who go above and beyond to make a difference in the lives of others.” This year, Bruno noted, there is also “one amazing, life saving dog that certainly did the extraordinary!”

Each year, the Red Cross honors local heroes nominated by the public. “We honor the spirit of the Red Cross humanitarian mission when we honor heroes whose life changing or life saving deeds inspire others,” Bruno said.

Honorees for this year’s event in Hartford include:

• Richard Dunn, of Wolcott, a Security Officer with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, who used Red Cross training to save his choking son.

• Sergeant First Class Micah Welintukonis, of Coventry, an Army Reserve who saved the lives of two comrades in a combat situation, despite sustaining grave wounds of his own.

• Cheryl Ann Hansen, of East Hartford, who helped to save the life of a drowning young man paralyzed by an injury in the water.

• “Duke,” a canine member of the Brousseau family in Portland, that alerted a young baby’s parents to the fact that she had stopped breathing.

• Robert Kitch, a UConn student from New Hartford, who helped to save an injured man from a burning vehicle after a car accident.

• State Representative Brandon McGee, of Hartford, being recognized for his extensive community involvement.

• Lieutenant Lionel Thomas, of Hartford, a Firefighter with the Hartford Fire Department, being honored for his attention to the human side of fire response and fire safety.

• Donna Sanford and Harry Segerstrom, Sr., both of Baltic, who are members of the Sprague Volunteer Fire Department. The pair are being recognized for their extensive outreach to seniors in Sprague.

• Blood donors who give through the American Red Cross Apheresis donation program, which uses a special process to extract specific blood products from donors.

“The Heroes breakfast is always inspiring. I know that those attending will be moved by the stories of these honorees,” Bruno said. “I hope we have a great crowd this year to show our appreciation for their good works.”

The Community Heroes Breakfast Celebration will be held Thursday, March 28, at 7:30 a.m., at the Hartford Marriott Downtown Hotel. Tickets for the event are $35. The event is one of three held in March and April in Connecticut. All three events are sponsored by Wells Fargo. Tickets and information are available by calling Laura Campbell at (203) 874-2532 ext. 16 or by e-mailing her at