Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

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The Andy Nowacki Foundation, Inc. “Heroes for Andy”

“Heroes for Andy,” a scholarship awards ceremony hosted by The Andy Nowacki Foundation, Inc., marked its ninth year at LaMalfa Centre in Mentor.

Lance Corporal Andy “Ace” Nowacki was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2005. A policeman in the Village of Grand River on his second tour of duty in Iraq, Nowacki strongly believed his role as a policeman was to protect and educate his community. It seemed a natural fit for his parents Denis and Sheila Nowacki to establish a scholarship in his name to perpetuate his love of community and to keep his memory alive.

The scholarship program for students aspiring to become policemen, fire fighters or emergency medical personnel has grown over the years and there are now more than two dozen recipients. This year’s scholarship winners are Seth Hannus, Daniel Fracci, Brandon Delk and Karla Bailey.

The foundation also salutes community heroes at the annual gala. Recipients of that honor include Pam Staff, founder of the Ohio Military Family Connection, and Sharon Zunkley, president of Keller Williams and an active community volunteer. Nick Zaibel, an Andy Nowacki Scholarship recipient for the Lakeland Police Academy, was honored as a Red Cross Act of Courage Award winner, and Jim Walters was saluted for his years of dedication to veterans in hospice. Cleveland police officer Joseph Tracz was honored posthumously, but his former partner on the force, Fred Fulton, also shot and wounded while making a routine traffic stop in 1970, attended the event. Tracz’s wife Linda and son Joe were also in attendance.

STORY BY CYNTHIA SCHUSTER EAKIN/PHOTOGRAPHS BY ERIC EAKIN

Brian Perry, Ka-Pi Hoh, and Tricia and Todd Sulzbach

Brian Perry, Ka-Pi Hoh, and Tricia and Todd Sulzbach

Kelly Joyce, Britton Nicholls and Suzanne Bartolotta

Kelly Joyce, Britton Nicholls and Suzanne Bartolotta

Lake County Probate Court Judge Mark Bartolotta with Sheila and Denis Nowacki and Congressman Dave Joyce

Lake County Probate Court Judge Mark Bartolotta with Sheila and Denis Nowacki and Congressman Dave Joyce

 

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