The Buffalo Island Leadership organization recognized area heroes in a special program Monday evening, June 15, at the Monette First Baptist Church Family Life Center.
(Town Crier photo/Nan Snider)
The second annual Leadership Buffalo Island Hero Program presented 11 awards to individuals who have overcome great obstacles and shown great strength and heroism.
"The people we recognize tonight have met many challenges in their lives," Eddie Dunigan said. "Our memories remind us of what a true hero is, and as adults we decide who our personal heroes are. These people are doing what they always do. They are just ordinary people doing extraordinary things every day."
"With help from his wife, Myrna, Boe has overcome desperate poverty to become the greatest single contributor in history to the people and the communities of Buffalo Island," Hultquist said.
Terry Stewart was nominated posthumously by Joe Hultquist. His family accepted the award for him.
"While facing a terminal illness, Terry provided an example as he had his entire life," Hultquist said. "He volunteered his time and his efforts for the betterment of the community was a noble task. He showed us how to live and how to die."
Georgia Selby was nominated by Jane Selby.
"Georgia unselfishly cared for her invalid daughter for approximately 20 years and her mother and aunt until their deaths," Selby said. "Georgia has cared for her two granddaughters after their mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis."
Jacquelyn Howell was nominated by Nancy Stewart and Edna Mae Freeman.
"Jacquelyn is a retired teacher and librarian who overcame polio and permanent paralysis of both legs and her right arm to become an inspiration and influence many school children and everyone she met," Stewart said.
Gilda Kay Hultquist was nominated by Joyce Sweet.
"Gilda Kay has survived many life threatening illnesses including breast cancer three times, open-heart surgery, and a stroke," Sweet said. "She has overcome all that and went on to earn a Master's Degree, and is a volunteer leader in our community."
Larry Drummond was nominated by Dusty Ross.
In his nomination Ross praised his neighbor for notifying the Brian Ross family and Lesleye Hawkins when their homes were on fire. Drummond's efforts ensured the safety of the families and his efforts prevented further damage to their home. Charley Ross presented the award.
Matt and Angie Rolland were nominated by Kima Stewart and Barbara Suber.
The nominations praised the Rollands for being concerned neighbors who notified the Brian Ross Family and Lesleye Hawkins families that their home was on fire. Their efforts ensured that no one was harmed during the unfortunate situation.
Bob Blankenship was nominated by Chub Qualls.
"Bob leads by example as Monette Fire Chief," Qualls said. "He worked tirelessly during the ice storm that left our town powerless for days. He also volunteers at the American Legion and Monette First Baptist Church."
Mark Johnson and the Leachville First Responders were nominated by Jane Selby. Mark Johnson, Teresa Johnson and Amy Lambert accepted the award.
"Mark and the First Responders are on duty 24 hours a day and come when they are needed," Selby said. "When they promptly arrive they provide life saving assistance."
Phyllis Lyerly was nominated by Bill Hetler.
"After the devastating ice storm hit our community, Phillip and his family arrived early and worked tirelessly to remove tree limbs and provide assistance necessary to help our community recover."
Jerry "Chub" Qualls was nominated by Edna Mae Freeman.
Freeman's nomination stated that Mayor Qualls had gone above and beyond the call of duty to help the community. His leadership has added several beautification projects, a new home for the museum, and a recycling program."