Red Cross honors community heroes

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Jean Almand Kitchin, left, talks with Norma Turnage after the American Red Cross 2018 Heroes Celebration Tuesday at Benvenue County Club. Jean Almand Kitchin is the recipient of the Norma Turnage Award.


Telegram Correspondent

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Longtime community advocate Jean Almand Kitchin and Nash County Deputy Director of Emergency Services Scott Rogers were honored Tuesday morning at the Frederick E. Turnage Chapter of the American Red Cross Heroes Celebration.

Almand was the recipient of the Norma Turnage Award, given to a woman in the community who shows long-term commitment to public service.

Almand said she was honored and humbled to receive the award, given in honor of her friend, Norma Turnage. She took the occasion to thank all of her fellow volunteers through the years who are always working to make Rocky Mount a better place.

“You have to look for the moments,” Almand said. “Moments and opportunities when you can do something to help another person. You have to slow down and notice the windows of opportunities God puts in front of you every day for you to do something good for someone else.”

Norma Turnage was in attendance and said after the event that she is the one who is flattered and honored that she is being associated with “someone as outstanding as Jean.”

“She’s always been so willing to work hard for our community, for young people especially and our state’s universities. It’s been a joy to know her, to be her friend,” Turnage said.

The Community Hero Award winner, Scott Rogers, has taken his sense of public service to the next level and made it his career to help others. Scott began his fire service career in 1987 with the Stony Creek Rescue Squad. He’s risen through the ranks and today is deputy director of Nash County Emergency Services.

Chapter board member Thomas Rhodes said Rogers is a hero and a role model in the community.

“He always goes beyond the call of duty,” Rhodes said.

Rogers said his parents instilled in him his sense of public service and that he doesn’t see it as a job to help people in need.

“This is my home,” Rogers said, “It’s my privilege to help the people in Nash County.”

Rogers added that he is no different from the other first responders in Nash County.

“Whether you’re in law enforcement, a first responder or a firefighter, people that go into this kind of work are unique,” he said. “They have an instinct to help others, and I am so grateful to work with so many awesome people that go to work every day for the sole purpose of helping people and saving lives.”

Cally Edwards, executive director of the American Red Cross serving Northeastern North Carolina, said Kitchin and Rogers demonstrate the seven fundamental principles of the American Red Cross — humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality.

“The celebration this morning was a great opportunity for us to celebrate the chapter’s accomplishments and thank our many volunteers and community partners,” Edwards said.

Chapter Chairman Kenneth Hunter agreed and added that in the past 12 months, the Frederick E. Turnage Chapter has helped 183 local families and collected 10,802 units of blood.

“The impact our chapter has locally is a critical element of ensuring support for those in need,” he said. “From enabling the delivery of blood — the gift of life — to medical patients, to helping families recover from fires and other disasters, to the support we provide Armed Forces personnel and their families, our local American Red Cross volunteers and donors provide essential services that impact a significant number of our neighbors every year."