It was all smiles as community members gathered on Friday to honor everyday people for their heroism.
"People have done extraordinary things," CBS 13 anchor Sam Shane told a crowd of 300. "We have many stories to tell."
A navy veteran, two Costco workers, a doctor and a police officer were among 16 heroes selected for the awards. But one hero stood out from the pack.
Kabang, a mixed-breed dog from the Philippines, lost her snout when she sprang into the path of a motorcycle, saving the lives of two young children. Doctors at UC Davis plan to perform facial reconstructive surgery on the dog in the spring, said a caregiver, accepting the "Animal Hero" award for Kabang.
Another special hero was Davis native Maria Andrade. The 9-year-old elementary school student heard a smoke alarm at the apartment complex where she lived and immediately told her parents to call 911.
"I feel very proud of stopping the fire," Maria said.
Loud applause filled Freeborn Hall at UC Davis the forum for this year's "Heroes Recognition" event, sponsored by Capital Region Red Cross.
Woodland Fire Department's Dominic Norman earned the distinguished "Professional Rescuer Hero" award at the ceremony. Norman was honored for consoling and driving an emotional mother to the hospital after her 3-year-old was fatally burned in a car accident.
"It's a very humbling experience," Norman said. "I was just doing my job that day."
Facial reconstruction surgeon Dr. Craig Senders was recognized for his numerous trips abroad to help those with facial birth defects. "On each of these trips, we're able to change lives," he said, pointing to before-and-after pictures of his patients.
Capital Region Red Cross CEO Dawn Linblom closed the event, reminding attendees that heroic actions are not exclusive to a certain group.
"Each one of us has the capacity to be a hero," Linblom said.
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