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Plano Teen Honored By American Red Cross For Life-Saving Actions

The Certificate of Merit is awarded to those who use skills learned in their training course
Photo: American Red Cross / Website

Plano, Texas resident Adrian Ponce was honored by the American Red Cross North Texas Region on Monday, May 13, 2024, for his courageous intervention in Sept.2023, saving the life of Marcia Hansen. 

Seventeen-year-old Ponce, a student at Plano Senior High School, received the American Red Cross Certificate of Merit in a ceremony at the Plano Municipal Center. Present at the event were the city of Plano Mayor John B. Muns and American Red Cross North Texas Region CEO Linda Braddy.

“Adrian relied on the skills he learned from his Red Cross training and acted quickly and decisively during a crisis,” said Braddy in an official statement. “He exemplifies the mission of the Red Cross to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies. We commend him for his willingness to help others in distress.”

Last Sept. while volunteering at the City House Gala held at the Renaissance Dallas at Plano Legacy West Hotel, Ponce responded to urgent calls for assistance. Rushing to the scene, he found Hansen on the floor of the restroom, bleeding from a head injury. Drawing on his Red Cross training, Ponce applied pressure to Hansen's wound, helping to control the bleeding until medical personnel arrived, ultimately saving her life.

“It was an exciting experience getting that award and knowing how hard I worked to be a lifeguard,” said Ponce in an official statement. “This award shows I’m able to show I can use my skills rather than just saying I can. I would like to thank Katherine Bell, my boss, for helping me with the process.”

The Certificate of Merit, the highest accolade bestowed by the American Red Cross to individuals who employ skills acquired through Red Cross Training Services courses to save or sustain lives, bears the signature of the President of the United States, who traditionally serves as the Honorary Chairman of the American Red Cross.

“Adrian, we are so proud of you,” said Mayor Muns in the official statement. “We thank [the American Red Cross] for presenting this honor, and we thank you [Adrian] for what you did that night, and for many more nights to come, I’m sure, because you have that heart — what we always consider to be that community heart of Plano.”

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