Red Cross Heroes Luncheon

Story by Chelsea-Catherine Croom, Photography by Chelsea-Catherine Croom & Woody Woodard

Carl Rudd & Leigh Anne Bentley

Carl Rudd & Leigh Anne Bentley

The Mid-West Tennessee Chapter of the American Red Cross hosted their annual Heroes Luncheon on Thursday, May 11 at the Carl Grant Center at Union University in Jackson.

Each year the event honors local heroes for their exceptional community service. The 2017 local heroes honored for their community service at the luncheon were: Humanitarian of the Year: Carl Rudd; Uniformed Hero of the Year: Chris Young, Henderson County Fire Department Chaplain; Red Cross Volunteer of the Year: Travis Smith, Jr.; Red Cross Distinguished Service Member: Dennis and Mary Lee.

Senator Mark Green gave the keynote address. Senator Green, a former Army officer and physician, was an Army flight surgeon for a special operations team that captured Saddam Hussein, and he wrote a book about his experience. Senator Green has been nominated by President Donald Trump to serve as the Secretary to the Army.

This year’s event was special because the Red Cross is celebrating 100 years of service in Tennessee in 2017.

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit