Thursday, March 27, 2008
Kendrick, Williams honored at
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer
MABANK–Kathy Kendrick, who volunteers so much, the Volunteer of the Year award has her name on it, was honored as the Cedar Creek Lake area’s Citizen of the Year Monday at the 13th annual “Taste of Cedar Creek Lake.”
Aley Methodist pastor the Rev. Eston Williams was honored with the Jean Nichols Lifetime Service Award for his decades of service in multiple projects around the community.
The two awards capped a glittering evening with a “Night at the Oscars” theme, complete with Show Stopper awards – a golden plunger – along with multiple costume changes, song and dance.
Held for the first time at the new Mabank High School, the annual “Taste” event drew a nearly sold-out crowd to the school’s Commons Area.
Fourteen Cedar Creek Lake Area Chamber of Commerce member restaurants/caterers filled tables with tasty treats.
After an hour for eating, attendees moved into the school’s 750-seat auditorium for a nearly two-hour program.
Chamber Hub president Rick Brown of Cornerstone Business Solutions and director Shannon Steakley of Trinity Valley Electric Co-op served as masters of ceremony for the event.
In keeping with the event’s movies theme, Steakley changed into four different costumes during the program, while the tuxedo-clad Brown switched from a red tie and cummerbund to a black tie.
Last year’s Citizen of the Year, banker Ralph Fortner, said Kendrick routinely volunteers for numerous programs through the area Kiwanis club, the Cedar Creek Lake Women’s Club and the Chamber.
The Gun Barrel City chapter-sponsored Volunteer of the Year award was renamed the Kathy Kendrick Volunteer of the Year Award last year to recognize her long-standing service, Fortner noted.
Kendrick, the co-owner of Lone Star Maps, was characteristically low-key when accepting the Citizen of the Year award, saying only “Thank you” to the assembly.
Williams, who currently serves as the lake-area Habitat for Humanity board chairman, came to the area singing in a production of “Camelot,” veteran Realtor Ralph Monroe told the gathering.
When a tragic accident revealed there was no place for a medical helicopter to land in the area, Williams spearheaded a fund-raising drive to build the heliport now located behind the Gun Barrel City Fire Station, Monroe said.
A long-time Family Resource Center board member, Williams has involved himself in numerous volunteer efforts through his church, the Kiwanis club and the Chamber.
The only person to be named Citizen of the Year twice, Williams “has energy and enthusiasm, and a get-it-done work ethic,” Monroe said.
“People who don’t get involved don’t realize you get more from service than you give,” Williams told the gathering.
Williams told the gathering about a project years ago where he and his daughters helped a woman clean up her yard and garage after the woman’s husband had died.
On the way home, the girls sang a song about “helping makes you feel good,” he recalled.
“I’ve received more than I’ve ever, ever given,” Williams said.
See Sunday’s issue for more pictures and awards from the annual “Taste of Cedar Creek.”
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