OGDEN -- It takes a certain kind of person to run into a burning building with a garden hose, or to run through highway traffic to reach a man trapped in an overturned car, or to see a friend choking and jump into action to save his life.
It takes a hero, and Ogden's got them.
More than a dozen area residents were honored Wednesday at the 2011 Red Cross Heroes Breakfast at the Ogden Eccles Conference Center.
"The Red Cross does this because it fits so closely with our own mission of being able to respond and react, and be of service to the community," said Stephanie Christiansen, Utah Red Cross spokeswoman.
"We are inspired by these heroes who are living that life every day.
"I don't think anyone knows how they will react or respond in a situation until that situation happens. Then you react in a heroic way, or you go find help. These are people whose gut instinct was to step up."
Fire rescue heroes
Ogden brothers Steve and Michael Thornton in September risked their lives and saved seven people from a burning duplex on Monroe Boulevard.
Michael Thornton kicked in the door, and Steve helped him rescue six children and their grandmother. Steve Thornton was spraying the flames with a garden hose when he saw the hand of one more victim atop the stairs. Steve sprayed the man with water, then ran in, but the structure began to give way and the Thorntons were forced to retreat. An explosion took the life of the last victim, a 65-year-old man.
Maj. Ryan Lucero, then a captain, and Maj. Brian Bragg were on a night combat support mission in Afghanistan when friendly forces on the ground were in danger of being overwhelmed by surrounding Taliban insurgents.
The friendly forces were running out of ammunition and were calling for airstrikes, but the pilots weren't sure where the Taliban were in relation to the troops.
With Bragg's help, Lucero was able to attack the Taliban within 100 yards of the friendly forces, which enabled the troops to survive their battle. The efforts of Lucero and Bragg saved the lives of 24 U.S. Army troops and five civilians.
Youth Good Samaritan
Michael Cevering, 17, is the recipient of the Youth Good Samaritan award. While eating lunch in the Weber High School cafeteria, a fellow student began choking on a chicken sandwich. Cevering, also a lifeguard at North Shore pool, performed the Heimlich maneuver on the severely autistic student, clearing his airway and saving his life.
Adult Good Samaritan
Gary Cox was at a family birthday party in Roy when the power went out and he heard a crash. Cox saw a fire down the street and found pilot Clayton Roop near the wreckage of his crashed Cessna.
With sparks and flames nearby, Cox moved Roop away from the site to assess his injuries. Before responders arrived, Cox kept talking to Roop to keep the injured man from going into shock.
While traveling north on Interstate 215, Sgt. Shane Buss saw a car roll on its top, hitting the center divide. Buss jumped the median and ran to the car, with the driver still inside. Buss pulled the driver away from the vehicle and oncoming traffic. Buss assessed the driver, took steps to keep him from going into shock, then returned to the flipped car and directed traffic around it, to prevent further accidents.
Michael Medina was walking past a home on 36th Street when he noticed black smoke. He started banging on the door and dowsing the house with a garden hose. Ross Patterson, who lives across the street, ran over and told Michael that an elderly disabled man lived in the home. The men decided to break open the door. They heard moans and ran through flames to pull the elderly man to safety.
Dale Covington took his addiction recovery and turned it into his life's work. Covington volunteers his time to educate and counsel addicts and families affected by drug and alcohol addiction through classes he teaches at Farmington Bay Detention Center, Hill Air Force Base, Ogden Regional Medical Center, local churches and schools.
The honorees are the Sisters of St. Benedict's Foundation. Sisters Iris Beckwith, Jean Gibson, Luke Hoschette, Danile Knight, Stephanie Mongeon and Mary Zenzen came to Ogden to build and operate St. Benedict's Hospital, established a school of nursing and worked to build Ogden Regional Medical Center.
They continue to contribute their time to education, health care, social justice, and programs for women, children and families in Northern Utah.
For more information about the Utah Red Cross, visit www.utahredcross.org.