Santa Monica Fire Department firefighters were among the honorees at the American Red Cross Santa Monica chapter’s annual “Red Tie Affair” fundraiser gala at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica Saturday, March 15th.

The event honored “the humanitarian spirit of extraordinary people who have demonstrated courage and unselfish character and whose work has helped save lives,” said a Red Cross source.

Santa Monica Fire Chief Jim Hone accepted the 2008 Rick Crocker Spirit Award on behalf of Santa Monica firefighters for their courageous work during the recent California wildfires and their ongoing service to the community. The Rick Crocker Spirit Award is given out each year in memory of Santa Monica police officer Ricardo A. “Rick” Crocker, a Marine reservist and Red Cross chapter volunteer who was killed in May 2005 while serving in Iraq.

The firefighters of Santa Monica were selected for the award not only for their gallant efforts during recent wildfires but for their year-round efforts “in promoting the well-being of the residents of the community and going above and beyond what they are called upon to do on a daily basis,” according to the Red Cross chapter.

Shonda Rhimes, creator and executive producer of ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy and Rob Corn, producer of the show, also received a Spirit Award for the show’s continued support of the Red Cross and positive portrayal of Red Cross services and volunteers on the hit show.

Other recipients included Dr. Kathy Magliato, director of cardiac surgery at St. John’s Medical Center and Dr. Wally Ghrurabi, medical director of the Nethercutt Emergency Center at the Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center and Orthopaedic Hospital. Santa Monica City Councilman Bobby Shriver presented the awards.

The American Red Cross Santa Monica chapter is a nonprofit corporation that provides health and safety education, youth services, blood services, CPR and first aid training, disaster awareness and disaster relief efforts.

Information, www.redcrossof santamonica.org/ or (310) 394-3773.

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