October 23, 2006

Over the weekend of Sept. 7-10, the Knights of Pythias and Pythian Sisters from throughout Maryland met at their annual convention at Four Points Sheraton on the Dual Highway in Hagerstown.

Jean Hanna of Hagerstown, outgoing Grand Chief of the Pythian Sisters, hosted the three-day meeting, where new officers were elected for the coming year.

At their Friday evening festivities, the Sophisti'Cats, a singing group from Williamsport High School, entertained with familiar and lively songs from the '50s era.

Following the entertainment, Hanna presented a check for $29,000 to Amy E. Kearney, community liaison of The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins Hospital. The donation is to be used for research and the treatment and cure of ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.


This presentation culminates a year of raising funds for the charity of choice for the past year. In 2005, a large donation was made to Friends of Fido.

Next year, Alex's Lemonade Stand, which contributes to research and treatment of cancer in children, will be the beneficiary of fundraising by the group.

Amanda Eisel of Boonsboro placed eighth at an American Quarter Horse Association Regional Experience in the Novice Youth Hunter Under Saddle class, with Captive Kisses, an American Quarter Horse, during the Region Five Experience held July 28-30 in Augusta, N.J.

Created to encourage participation from exhibitors at all levels of ability in an event branded to the American Quarter Horse lifestyle, Regional Experiences blend competition, education and trade show commerce, as well as free test rides, to introduce more people to AQHA and invite previous exhibitors back to the Association.

The Washington County Chapter of the American Red Cross held its 89th annual business meeting and volunteer recognition on Sept. 18 at Red Cross headquarters. Presentation of volunteer awards followed the annual business meeting.

The following volunteers were recognized for their years of service and presented with service pins:

For five years of service: Louis Ahalt, William Allager, John Bailey, Gloria Bastian, Bob Carder, Linn Davison, Jay Frantz, Wally Frazee, David Hadigan, Barbara Gaver, Mary Kay Gilbert, Joyce Martin, Mary Moser, Mike Mowen and Robert Rankin;

10 years: Carlo Belella, Arlene Boggs, Betty Domer, Patricia Griffith, Virginia Lefever, Doris McConnel, Glenn Plank, Lenore Ralls, Gerald Weaver and Bob McEnroe;

15 years: Sylvia Hager, Ronald Phillips, Rayetta Schindel and Barbara Twigg;

20 years: Zoanna Everett and Pansy Stover;

25 years: Loretta Mulcahey;

30 years: Al Martin and Phyllis Sturtz;

35 years: Sandy Graff.

Julie Barr-Strasburg, executive director, presented Harry Saufley and Denny Albert with the Executive Director's Award for their dedication and help in organizing the chapter's historical poster collection. The collection is displayed throughout the Red Cross headquarters building for our volunteers and community members to enjoy.

The Good Neighbor Award was presented to Outback Steakhouse for donating a delicious dinner for the participants at the 2006 Miniature Golf Tournament held at Family Recreation Park.

Tony Pirrone was presented with an Exceptional Volunteer Service Award for his role in disaster services during flooding in Pennsylvania.

Ernest Thieverage received a Certificate of Appreciation for his volunteer work as a CPR instructor.

Awards were also presented to Nancy Forsythe, Dean Hoover and Dorothy Truax for their continued support to blood services.

Kate Pound received the Beulah T. Meyers Award for humanitarian service for her 20 years of exceptional volunteer service as a receptionist and staff aide.

The Beulah T. Meyers Award is the Washington County Chapter's highest volunteer award. The award was developed to honor those who have the ability to motivate others so that no job is too great or too small.

Pound's support has been greatly appreciated during national disasters such as Desert Storm, 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina. During the weeks following Hurricane Katrina, Pound met the demands of processing more than $250,000 in donations. She continues to provide support every Monday morning at the reception desk, and she prepares the deposits for the bank.

Pound is the consummate professional. She takes pride in her work and is a tremendous asset to the chapter office.

Retiring chapter chairman Alfred Martin received recognition for his outstanding service to the chapter after three years as Board Chairman. Robert Rankin was introduced as the incoming Board Chairman.

This year marks the 125th anniversary of the American Red Cross. The Washington County Chapter values and thanks all the volunteers who have served in the past and currently, to help people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergency situations.

Because volunteers are the heart of the Red Cross, the annual business and volunteer appreciation meeting recognizes the tremendous contributions of its volunteers.

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