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Red Cross Announces 2014 Solano County Heroes

Fairfield, CA – The American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter will award the 2014 Solano County Heroes at the annual Breakfast on Friday, October 10, at the NorthBay Healthcare Conference Center in Fairfield. The event recognizes local individuals and organizations that make a difference in their community through acts of extraordinary courage and kindness, and is proudly sponsored by Kaiser Permanente and NorthBay Healthcare Conference Center.

This year’s honorees include the following Solano County citizens and organizations:

Community Service Hero, Organization

Vacaville REACH Youth Coalition serves as a prevention effort by engaging at-risk youth in learning important life and leadership skills and by creating a positive environment where youth feel connected to their peers, adults, and to the community.

Community Service Hero, Organization

Alooma Temple & Court are two local nonprofit fraternal organizations in Suisun City combining efforts to provide the community both leadership and direction in voter registration information, youth development, economic education, health and medical research, and other charitable programs.

Community Service Hero, Youth

Ana Karen Zamabria is a high school leader with the Vacaville REACH Youth Coalition who has been an inspiration in her community as she advocates for ongoing safety and quality of life improvements in her neighborhood; in particular, efforts to make the “Rocky Hill Trail” in a low-income neighborhood of Vacaville a recognized trail as part of the city’s General Plan.

Community Service Hero, Individual

Dr. James Sanderson was the lead coordinator for the recent California Dental Association’s “CDA Cares” event in Vallejo, working tirelessly to raise money and volunteers to provide an estimated $1.5 million in dental care to nearly 2,000 patients who otherwise couldn’t afford it. He’s also been serving his community in numerous other ways for over 25 years.

Community Service Hero, Individual

Technical Sergeant Jason Jessee has served his local community through hours of work organizing and participating in supporting programs such as the Food Bank, Operation Stay Warm, Solano County MS Foundation, Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the Wounded Veterans Association. Jason is currently on active duty at the Travis Air Force Base.

Community Service Hero, Individual

Technical Sergeant Stephanie Zamudio is a volunteer member and advisor for the Solano County Search and Rescue team. She donates time teaching youth First Aid/ CPR, has located missing persons and participated in a number of other S&R events. Stephanie is currently on active duty at Travis Air Force Base.

Act of Kindness & Philanthropy Heroes, Individual

Chris Hernandez, an employee at The Salvation Army Kroc Center in Suisun City, recently donated a kidney to a Kroc Center member after hearing about his need and the likely seven- or eight-year wait on the transplant list for a new one.

Act of Kindness & Philanthropy Heroes, Individual

Bryan Pro is a Youth Services Officer in Vacaville who became the mentor and surrogate father to a young man he met through the Youth Services Diversion Program. Spending his own time and expenses to visit and mentor the youth after he was put into a boot camp program in San Luis Obispo, Bryan helped the young man successfully turn around his life.

Act of Kindness & Philanthropy Hero, Organization

Rebuilding Together Solano County is a non-profit that provides housing rehabilitation, maintenance, and repair work through local volunteers for low-income seniors, the disabled, veteran homeowners, and even other nonprofits.

Act of Kindness & Philanthropy Hero, Organization

Balfour Beatty Communities (BBC) is the developer that manages family housing at Travis Air Force Base. Their community center, scholarships, programs, and activities have created a community for the base residents, encouraging safety, addressing special needs and working with partners to ensure that family life for all is enhanced.

Act of Courage Hero

Brandon Thompson, an aide to Congressman John Garamendi, helped subdue a suspect running toward him when he saw two deputies were chasing the man in downtown Fairfield. He helped in part to protect the numerous high school students at a nearby Starbucks.

Act of Courage Hero

Chris Muriset is a full-time civilian firefighter at Travis Air Force Base. While visiting a friend in San Leandro a fire started in a home across the street and a woman became trapped. Chris guided the woman away from the flames and then pulled her to safety.

Lifesaving Hero

Jeff Smith saved the life of an older man who collapsed at a gym in Vacaville. While other people called for help, Jeff performed CPR for approximately eight minutes until the fire department arrived.

Public Safety Hero

Gerard Dumak is a Vacaville resident and California Department of Forestry & Fire Prevention firefighter based in Alameda. On his day off, he safely rescued a disabled man and notified residents to evacuate after noticing a fire at an apartment building in the Oakland area.

The actions of these Heroes embody the principles and ideals of the Red Cross’ humanitarian mission. For more information or to purchase tickets for the Heroes Breakfast event, please visit: or call (707) 438-7063.

About the Heroes Awards Program

People in the Bay Area make a difference in the lives of others in their communities every day. The American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter and civic leaders from six counties in the Bay Area are joining together to celebrate everyday heroism, recognizing those individuals and organizations whose extraordinary acts of kindness and courage make them heroes. American Red Cross chapters around the country hold events in their communities to recognize acts of heroism by local residents and pay tribute to those who have performed lifesaving acts. Each year, nearly 900 people attend events in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo and Solano Counties to honor local heroes. For more information about the events and corporate sponsorship opportunities, please visit All proceeds from the events support the disaster preparedness and relief efforts of the American Red Cross in the Bay Area.

About American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter

As a community-based, humanitarian organization, the American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter provides relief to those affected by disasters and empowers individuals in our community to prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies. By helping people in the Bay Area learn how to take care of their families and neighbors, the Red Cross strengthens the community and makes it ready for all types of disasters, including home fires, earthquakes, wildfires and health emergencies. Call 1-888-4-HELP-BAY (1-888-443-5722) or visit to learn more. You may also find us on Facebook and Twitter.