Chico, Calif--Tonight the American Red Cross honored north state heroes during their centennial celebration at the Sierra Nevada Big Room.
Following the Oroville Spillway crisis, this year's event took on a whole new meaning.
Smiles, applause and at one point tears filled the room for the many people being recognized.
The American Red Cross said 90 percent of their work is done with the help of volunteers.
That's why tonight was all about celebrating them.
Gary Cantwell is a retired Chico police officer who's been volunteering with the Red Cross since 2008.
Tonight he was recognized as the extraordinary volunteer of the Oroville Spillway response, where he volunteered anywhere from twelve to twenty-one hours a day at the Silver Dollar Fair Grounds shelter.
"I think there's other people just as deserving as I for helping the Oroville Spillway disaster," said Cantwell.
He did anything that needed to be done including picking up sand-bags, getting food for the victims, and handling deliveries.
He said there was only one way to describe it.
"Exhausting…,” he said, proceeded by a laugh.
Also honored tonight for their efforts was Century 21 Jeffries Lydon.
"It was scary for a whole lot of people, they had no idea what might happen, so we all felt that," said Doug Love of Century 21.
He said he and his agents wanted to help in anyway.
"I had just completed a needs assessment of what we needed, literally gave him the list, and he went out into the community, rallied the 64 agents, came back four hours later with everything on that list," said Amanda Ree, executive director of American Red Cross of Northeastern California.
Love said they're surprised to be honored tonight because it didn't feel like a hero action at all.
"Our work touches literally every single American, at some point in their lives, so there's nothing we can do without volunteers we need them," she said.
Other volunteers were recognized for their hours and years of service, as well as first responders who saved lives while on the line of duty.
If you are interested in volunteering with the Red Cross, head to their website, www.redcross.org.More