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PRESS CONTACT INFO

ROBIN ERICKSON
Director of Communications

PHONE
(401) 831-7700 x101
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[email protected]

Thursday, January 8, 2004
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island and the American Red Cross of Rhode Island Announce The January 2004 Community Heroes

Eight Students from the University of Rhode Island are Recognized for their Courage and Lifesaving Efforts

The American Red Cross of Rhode Island and Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) are proud to honor eight University of Rhode Island (URI) students as the January 2004 Community Heroes. The award recipients are Shad Ahmed of Warwick; Frank Breau of Brewer, Maine; Chris Dupuis of Lincoln; Emily Paul of Baldwin, N.Y.; Kristen Rodina of Ridge, N.Y.; Teresa Rodina of Ridge, N.Y.; Amy Swiencki of West Kingston and Jeff Tagen of Wakefield. The Community Heroes award acknowledges the good works of "everyday people" who have made significant, positive impacts on individuals, families, organizations or entire communities in Rhode Island.

The eight students worked together and helped save the life of Katie Weiss, a second-year-nursing student from New City, N.Y., who was experiencing an epileptic seizure. While in the shower, her suitemate Kristen Rodina saw Katie unconscious on the tile floor. Together with her twin sister, friends and volunteer emergency medical technicians, the students saved Katie's life by delivering emergency medical attention during several critical minutes.

The Community Heroes program is a collaborative effort between BCBSRI and the American Red Cross of Rhode Island. Community Heroes can be everyday citizens, local firefighters, police, or emergency responders. They can be honored for acts of heroism (such as saving someone from drowning) or for an effort over time (such as reading to an elderly neighbor on a regular basis).

To nominate someone for a community hero award, call 459-1304, or go to www.riredcross.org/communityheroesaward.htm or www.bcbsri.org and click on "In the Community".

Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island has been the state's leading health insurer for 64 years and now covers more than 650,000 customers. Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. American Red Cross of Rhode Island volunteers provide emergency food, clothing and shelter each year to more than 1,200 Rhode Islanders who suffer a house fire or other disaster.  All Red Cross assistance is provided free of charge. The American Red Cross is not a government agency and relies on donations to fund its work.

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