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Photos: A Night For Volunteers

More than 60 volunteers, groups honored at 11th Annual Volunteer Recognition Day

To some, Don Swift is another friend and neighbor.

But to many Vienna residents, he's better known as Santa Claus, the one who spends much of each Christmas Season ringing a lone bell outside the Giant Supermarket on Maple Avenue. His sparkling eyes and snow white beard help raise thousands of dollars for the Salvation Army (despite, by some accounts, his horribly off-tune singing).

Swift's was one of the many stories shared Tuesday at Vienna's 11th Annual Volunteer Recognition day, a celebration through the "Vienna At Your Service" program "to celebrate and promoteĀ volunteerism in the community."

Like the other volunteers honored Tuesday, Swift's acts of kindness far outnumber his month-long stint as St. Nick. A neighbor told the crowd of more than 150 that Swift put together a band of 15 other neighbors during one of the crushing snow storms of 2010 to push and dig his car out of the house so he could get his daughter to a hospital in Baltimore. The day after Sept. 11, Swift showed up at the Pentagon to make breakfast for first responders.

A half dozen of those honored were given the Mayor's Award, to signify service above and beyond normal kindness and sacrifice.

Two of the honorees, and Carol Orndorff, died in the time since the same ceremony last year. Family members of Archambault, an active volunteer with the Vienna Volunteer Fire Department, and Orndorff, a longtime Vienna resident, volunteer and staff member as well as the mother of Councilman Mike Polychrones, accepted awards in their memory.

The Town Business Liaison Committee honored Patrick and Julie Bazin, owners of and a new venture, , with the annual Carole Wolfand Community Service Award. The award is given each year to "a town business entity or business owner in recognition of outstanding contributions to
the community life and spirit of Vienna."

The Bazins were honored for their donations of time and money to local organizations such as The Alternative House, Real Food For Kids, Life With Cancer, The Tiger Lily Foundation, Leukemia Society, MS and Best Buddies -- Patrick and his "best buddy" Cameron have worked together and participated in the annual Best Buddies fundraiser "Life is Sweet" for the past six years, according to one of their nominators.

A full list of honorees are below. To see recipients and read more about their volunteer work, click through the pictures in the media player above.

2012 Honorees

  • Kathy Barach
  • Ruth Bartman
  • B. Michael Berger
  • Darrell Berger
  • Chris Brunjes
  • Susan Canavan
  • John Connarn
  • Ruth Decker
  • John and Susan Delaney
  • Jerry Drye
  • M.J. Erskine
  • Toni Florimonte
  • Tim Foley
  • Margit Hanna
  • Mike Heilmann
  • David Keene
  • Herbert Langford
  • Patricia Melton
  • David F. Minyard
  • Ellen Nichols
  • Moon O'Connor
  • Maureen Riddel
  • Nancy Ruff
  • Michele Sanford
  • Gloria Sargent
  • Don L. Swift
  • Patti Vaughn
  • Alicia Williams
  • Nancy Wormeli
  • From the 50-90 Club
    • Diana Amsbaugh
    • Doris Amsbaugh
    • Goldie Appleton
    • Maxine and Bill Burke
    • Nola Casieri
    • Joyce Dyson
    • Betty and Doyle Frederick
    • Beth and Chuck Gray
    • Audrey and Bob Grena
    • Wolfie Scherer
    • Dagney Shells
    • Rita and Ira Smook
    • Linda and Fred Ulle
    • Gladys and Jim Wiley

2012 Mayor's Award

  • T.R. Cook
  • Jack Mitchell
  • Carol Orndorff

2012 Honorable Mentions

  • Mary Ellen Larkins
  • Kathy Tugendhat

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