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Pennsylvania Letter Carrier Honored as 'National Hero' for Fire Rescue
National Association of Letter Carriers (AFL-CIO) National Association of Letter Carriers (AFL-CIO)
Washington, DC
Thursday, September 24, 2009

NALC Pres. Fredric Rolando (r) hands "Hero of the Year" award 9-24-09 to Timothy Foote of Harrisburg PA (NALCphoto by Mike Shea)
A letter carrier who rescued an unconscious elderly neighbor from a blazing fire was honored today by the 300,000-member National Association of Letter Carriers (AFL-CIO) as its 2009 "National Hero of the Year."

NALC President Fredric V. Rolando bestowed the award on Timothy Foote, 47, of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, a member of NALC Branch 500 in Harrisburg, at a special luncheon ceremony at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill hotel.

Foote was watching television on October 29, 2007 when he heard his daughter yelling from the den, frightened by the sight of a neighbor's house being engulfed by flames. Although barefoot and wearing just a sweatshirt and gym shorts, the letter carrier and former firefighter raced to the home, broke in, dropped down and began crawling around. Foote spotted his neighbor unconscious on the living room floor. He immediately pulled the man out of the blazing residence to safety. Fire fighters said Jauss likely would have succumbed if not for the letter carrier's actions.

The union's National Humanitarian of the Year award was presented to Emmanuel Anim-Sackey, 50, of West Orange, New Jersey, a member of NALC New Jersey Merged Branch 38. Anim-Sackey sifts through scores of northern New Jersey thrift stores and yard sales to find used clothes, shoes, and school supplies and other items to send back to his home village in his native Ghana.

In announcing the awards, Rolando noted that the winners continue the proud tradition of letter carriers who have performed heroic and humanitarian acts throughout the union's 120-year history.

"They don't just deliver mail to the homes and businesses along their routes. They care about the people inside those homes and businesses," he said. "And when an emergency occurs, the letter carrier is often the first one on the scene and they do not hesitate to act – even if it means putting their own lives in jeopardy. That's why we call them heroes."

Three regional heroes and a "Carrier Alert" winner also were honored at the event:

James Patrick, 51, of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, a member of NALC Branch 451 in Johnstown, was named Eastern Region Hero for helping to evacuate a Roman Catholic pastor and his secretary after flames spread through a church rectory on September 23, 2008

Matthew Polnow, 46, of Rockford, Illinois, a member of NALC Branch 245 in Rockford, was named as Central Region Hero for freeing a terrified, wheelchair-bound woman from a smoked-filled van that was on fire after being involved in a three-vehicle accident on June 11, 2008.

Victoria Wells, 53, of Seattle, Washington, a member of NALC Branch 79 in Seattle, was named Western Region Hero for helping to evacuate 10 children and others from a burning home along her postal route on March 25, 2008 that also served as a day care facility.

James Brown, Jr., 52, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, a member of Virginia Beach NALC Branch 2819, was named the recipient of the Special Carrier Alert Award for interrupting his mail delivery on June 30, 2008 to rescue an elderly women who had fallen inside her home.


News Media Interview Contact
Name: Philip Dine
Title: Director of Public Relations
Group: National Association of Letter Carriers(AFL-CIO)
Dateline: Washington, DC United States
Direct Phone: 202-662-2489
Main Phone: 202-393-4695
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