October 18, 2021

Red Cross honors officer

Cortland Standard file photo

Homer police officer Michael Howell is shown in front of the Homer Police Department in this Cortland Standard file photo from October 2019.

A Homer police officer was among 16 people honored today by the American Red Cross of Central New York at its Real Heroes Breakfast in Syracuse.

Officer Michael Howell, an officer for 12 years, arrived at a structure fire in early April and found people were still inside the burning building, the Red Cross said. He entered the building — four times — to help occupants escape and close doors to limit the fire’s spread.

The Real Heroes Breakfast recognizes people who have performed heroic acts in life-threatening situations. The honorees include first responders as well as others directly responsible for saving a life or lives. Others were honored for a devotion to service in their communities.

In the past year, the chapter responded to 166 disasters, assisting 256 families; made 502 households safer through the installation of 955 free smoke alarms as part of the Home Fire Campaign; trained 13,775 people in first aid and CPR; provided 883 case services for military members, veterans and their families through Service to the Armed Forces; and collected 36,100 blood donations from volunteer donors.