Honoring Litchfield’s Caitlyn Callinan to Be as an ‘Everyday Hero’

March 1, 2019


Caitlyn Callinan

The New Hampshire and Vermont Region of the American Red Cross and Unitil are once again honoring heroes in New Hampshire by celebrating “everyday people” and the heroic things they do in our community. The 2019 Everyday Heroes Awards, sponsored by Unitil, will be held on Wednesday April 17 at 5:30 p.m. at the Grappone Center in Concord.

Everyday heroes are all around us — those good Samaritans, neighbors, and community members who intervene and help those in distress, give selflessly and generously, and fill a need they see in their community. These awards shine light on the heroism of those who don’t expect to be recognized. The Everyday Heroes Awards are celebrated nationally by the American Red Cross, to honor individuals who personify the Red Cross mission of service to their local communities.

Maria Devlin, CEO for the American Red Cross in New Hampshire and Vermont said, “Red Cross volunteers and blood donors do what they do because they know it will help someone — usually someone they don’t even know. This dedication to others is what we celebrate in recognizing the selfless acts of these New Hampshire residents, and we’re delighted to honor their work as Everyday Heroes.”

“Unitil is proud to be able to partner with the Red Cross and celebrate amazing individuals that represent the best in all of us,” Carol Valianti, Unitil Vice President of Communications said. “We invite the rest of our community to join us in working to recognize these true heroes.”

Caitlyn Callinan of Litchfield will receive the Youth Good Samaritan Award at the April 17 ceremony. Caitlyn Callinan chose a unique way to celebrate her 18th birthday — by running the Boston Marathon as the youngest, female registered runner in the marathon’s history. She did this in support of her grandfather, Wayne Gagne, who was fighting non-alcoholic cirrhosis of the liver. She spent six months training in all kinds of weather, and completed the marathon on April 16, 2018, in 3 hours, 49 minutes, raising more than $11,000 for the American Liver Foundation. She did all of this while maintaining a seventh place rank in her senior class at Campbell High School, serving as National Honor Society President and Student Council Vice President, working part-time, and training for 20-plus hours a week. Caitlyn is now a freshman at St. Anselm College, where she has both an athletic and academic scholarship. Although Mr. Gagne unfortunately passed away in December, 2018, Caitlyn’s running of the Boston Marathon inspired and encouraged him to keep fighting for his life, and helped countless others fighting liver disease.