Eight Inland Empire Heroes Awards given by American Red Cross – San Bernardino Sun

Inland Empire residents and organizations are being saluted by the American Red Cross for their heroism and service.

They will be honored at the Inland Empire Heroes Awards, set for Tuesday, March 8, at The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa in downtown Riverside.

“We are thrilled to recognize local heroes from across the Inland Empire that are saving lives and creating safer and stronger communities,” Lois Beckman, executive director of the American Red Cross of Riverside County, said in a news release.

The event will raise money for Red Cross disaster relief. The Jackie Autry and the Autry Foundation will match event donations up to $25,000.

For ticket, sponsorship or donation information, visit: redcross.org/ieheroes.

The honorees, and details about them from the release, are:

Lori Rich, founder of Taking It To The Streets with Lori and Shira, hands out treats to dogs that live in a car with their owner in Riverside on Friday, Feb. 8, 2019. The nonprofit group has been honored by the American Red Cross. (File photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)

Animal Welfare Hero Award: Lori Rich, from Taking it to the Streets with Lori and Shira

Taking it to the Streets with Lori and Shira is a nonprofit organization in Jurupa Valley founded by the mother-and-daughter team of Lori and Shira Rich. It helps pets that belong to homeless people, offering them food, water and veterinary services.

Corporate Hero Award: Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians

The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians has donated to hundreds of non-profit group across the Coachella Valley for more than 25 years. These include public-service agencies, youth groups, healthcare organizations, schools, libraries and food banks. It also has contributed toward efforts to fight diseases and to disaster-relief agencies such as the American Red Cross.

First Responder Hero Award: Upland police Officer Christopher Delaney, Sgt. Jim Tseng

In September 2021, Delaney and Tseng responded to a call about a man with a gun who was on his way to a hospital and had threatened to harm its staff. They worked with other officers to stop and arrest the man before anyone was hurt.

Gift of Life Hero Award: Mark Shinoda

Shinoda drives from Riverside County to Orange County to donate platelets. Each donation takes an average of 2 ½ hours, yet Shinoda donates every other Wednesday — despite the coronavirus pandemic. He has done so 44 times since 2020.

Good Samaritan Hero Award: Mike Johnson

Johnson, a Murrieta resident, was playing pickleball with a friend when his buddy suffered a heart attack. Johnson started CPR and yelled for help. He and others did CPR and used an automated external defibrillator and the friend could breath again before going to a hospital. Johnson now works to train others in CPR and first aid.

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