Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Dad Gets an Award

Last night was the Annual Meeting and awards presentation for our Southeast Minnesota Chapter of the American Red Cross.
This meeting was originally scheduled for August, but then all the bad floods happened in our area and the chapter was too busy responding to this disaster, so the meeting was rescheduled for a month later.

Melanie introduces a photo presentation of the relief efforts our chapter provided after the floods.

Here's a little background: Dad used to be the Chairman of the Board of Directors for our chapter and during his tenure, he recruited me as a board member. I served on the board with Dad for a few years and also participated in some other volunteer activities at the chapter during that time. I got to know some of the staff pretty well and it's nice for me to stop by the chapter office and see them every once in a while (even though I don't have free time to volunteer anymore).

Melanie (who is the Executive Director of the chapter) called me a while ago to tell me they were going to present Dad with an award at the annual meeting and could I please make sure that I convinced the "parental units" to attend without divulging the surprise. I did tell Mom, since she's the person who would have to do most of the convincing.

It was an enjoyable meeting (they served BIG pieces of pie and decaf coffee and I was able to knit almost the entire time). It was good to be reminded of the Red Cross purpose and services in our area and beyond, plus fun to see some familiar faces and visit with old friends.

There were many awards given out and then it was time for Dad's award.

Here's Dad with some of the other award recipients.

The award he received is the "Lois Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award." Lois was the Executive Director of the chapter for many years and Dad worked closely with her and the chapter on many projects during his tenure with the board. However, Lois reminded us of many other things Dad did for the Red Cross over the years, including teaching many adult and kids first aid classes, and organizing disaster response guidelines for Fillmore County (many more which I can't remember just now).

So Lois is reading all this stuff about Dad and then finally gets to the point where she says, "and the Lois Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award goes to....Chuck Kaun!" Dad looked so surprised! I patted him on the back and said, "didn't you figure out what she was getting around to, Dad?"
(Sorry Lois that I didn't get a better picture than this!)

Mom and I were so happy he had agreed to come to the meeting. Dad was funny, he said, "now I know why Mom told me to put a tie on."

It was great to see Dad recognized for all his hard work over the years, even though he didn't think it was hard at the time. That's just Dad....he enjoys helping others and if he can do a little teaching along the way, that's even better.
Here Lois is explaining that they would be getting a new award since Dad's name had been spelled wrong and they didn't find that out till the awards were unpacked for the presentation yesterday afternoon.

And the other thing I found out while I was at this meeting last night is that Mom and Dad are being honored this weekend as the Grand Marshals for the Fall Fest Celebration going on in my hometown. "Geez, Mom, you should tell me this stuff in advance," I said. "Well, I wanted you to be surprised when you saw it in the newspaper," was her response.


entoto said...

Congratulations, Chuck! I am so glad you were honored as an incredible asset to your community.

Ruthie, I bet you are following in his footsteps.

Susie said...

Congratulations to your Dad. Sounds as though both of your parents are very involved in community activities.

Larry said...

congratulations to your Dad! It's nice that you are proud of him.-On another note-I hope the Red Cross sticks with one program.-They keep changing their breath to compressions ratio etc.

Mary said...

They say that everyone in their lifetime will have 15 minutes of fame. Looks like your Mom and Dad have exceeded that!

Congratulations to you Dad, and Mom, too. You must be very proud of them, Ruthie!

Jayne said...

What a wonderful honor for your dad and for your parents. I know you are so proud of them. :c)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the free publicicty on your blog, it was very sweet of you. We are very stay behind the scenes people and do what we do, because we are Christians, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you".
Love MOM

RuthieJ said...

Hi Trixie,
I must admit that I'm nowhere as generous with my time as the parental units are. It's much harder because I work 40 hrs a week and then still have to come home and work some more, so that cuts into volunteering time. My contributions are usually monetary.

Hi Susie,
Thank you on their behalf. Mom and Dad are pretty well-recognized in their community and beyond. They've lived in the same community for 47 years, so that helps in the familiarity department also.

Hi Larry,
I took a Red Cross CPR class a long time ago and since I don't work in a health-related field, I've never re-certified. I seem to remember hearing about some changes in the procedure though.

Hi Mary,
I think it's a pretty big honor for them although Mom tended to downplay it a little bit. I'm looking forward to seeing them in the parade!

Hi Jayne,
It is a pretty neat thing for them to be recognized for all their contributions to the people and community over the years.

Hi Mom,
I thought you guys would like seeing this and I wanted to make sure the siblings got a chance to see it also, and a blog posting just seemed to be the easiest way to share it with everyone.

Ruth said...

Volunteers do make our communities better places. I am sure your parents have enjoyed their involvement with others. Congratulations to them.

Mary C said...

Congratulations to your folks, Ruthie. Such an honor - and such a wonderful way to honor your folks by putting it on your blog. Like others have said, "if it weren't for volunteers . . ." Working in a hospital we see what our volunteers do, and we have to admit that the hospital could very well flounder if it weren't for what they do, and they do it with a smile.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Ruth & Mary C,
Volunteering can be hard work sometimes, but it sure is rewarding. I know Mom & Dad have enjoyed their participation over the years.