2022 Patriot of the Year
CONGRATULATIONS to the 2022 Patriot of the Year Ms Rachel LaBatt!!!! Rachel, also known as, Miss Maryland United States 2021, received her bachelors degree in electrical engineering from Arizona State University and is currently a flight test engineer on NAS Patuxent River. She flies on the P-8A during the day and helps out the community in the evenings and weekends. In her spare time she likes to play soccer and has traveled to California to play in the US Futsal Nationals representing PAX Futsal Club. She is an assistant soccer coach for Special Olympics. She volunteers at “Christmas in April,” helping renovate homes in our community as well as building beds for children through “Sleep in Heavenly Peace” to ensure no child sleeps on the floor. When COVID started and ventilators were in short supply, Rachel partnered up with “Southern Maryland Loves You” to build ventilators out of breast pumps to make sure everyone had a fighting chance against COVID. She also volunteered with project graduation, celebrating all of the seniors big milestone in graduating high school. You can also find her helping out with the sheriffs office with shop with a cop and running the Law Enforcement Torch Run 5k coming up. Rachel is a huge part of the community and tries to be as active as possible.
2022 Patriot Organization of the Year
Congratulations to the Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department who were voted the 2022 Patriot Organization of the Year winning for the second year in a row!
2021 Patriot of the Year
Please join us in congratulating Monica Peters, our 2021 Patriot of the Year! Monica has spent the past six years as a Navy nurse in San Diego and Guam caring for NICU, PICU, and pediatric cancer patients as well as in the E/R throughout the pandemic. In Guam, she was also an active volunteer working with foster children. Monica recently concluded her Navy service but is continuing her nursing career in the E/R in Florida. Thank you, Monica, for the example you are to our community and our youth!
2021 Patriot Organization of the Year
Congratulations to the Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department who were voted the 2021 Patriot Organization of the Year!
2020 Patriot Organization of the Year
Congratulations to Second District Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad, voted the 2020 Patriot Organization of the Year! Second District VFD & Rescue Squad received 25% of our 5th Annual LFS Patriot Day (Virtual) 5K proceeds and will be honored with their name on our commemorative plaque in our Little Flower School lobby.
We hope all of our St. Mary’s County first responders and military organizations realize how much they are appreciated by our community! The spread of the votes throughout our 2020 two-month virtual event represented all corners of the county and included all of the fire departments and rescue squads as well as our Navy and Marine Corps community.
2019 Patriot of the Year
Congratulations to Sergeant Cara Grumbles, a member of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Lexington Park community policing unit, who donated $835 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure as our 2019 Patriot of the Year. Not only does Sergeant Grumbles actively work to improve the community through her job, in her free time she teaches kids about the dangers of drugs and also provides bike safety training. A devoted mother as well, Sergeant Grumbles is known to always put others first, even throughout her own courageous battle with breast cancer.
Congratulations to LtCol Vasilios “Cup” Pappas, our 2018 Patriot of the Year, who donated $620 to the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund. LtCol Pappas has served in the U.S. Marine Corps for over 20 years including deployments to both Iraq and Afghanistan. He was nominated for his selfless service and bravery by a fellow Marine and 2017 Patriot of the Year nominee who considers Cup to be a generous friend and “Great American.”
Congratulations to First Sergeant Michael Laney! As our 2017 Patriot of the Year, First Sergeant Laney donated over $660 to the Catholic Charities USA, Hurricane Relief. First Sergeant Laney has spent his adult life serving and protecting his community through law enforcement. He joined the Maryland State Police Program at age 18 and graduated from the Police Academy in 2002. Michael Laney is also a devoted husband and father. He volunteers at his children’s school on the facilities committee, donating his time and talents to maintain the school’s physical property.
2017 Junior Patriot of the Year
In 2017, we also recognized the memory of a special member of our Southern Maryland community, Nolan Ray “Sgt. Rollin Nolan” Scully. In honor of our 2017 LFS Junior Patriot of the Year, Nolan’s family donated $380 to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation Peyton Hero Fund. A loyal and fierce protector of his mommy, his dream was to become a police officer to protect others. Nolan’s courage, hope, and smile in the face of cancer were an inspiration to all who knew him, and his legacy continues to inspire children and adults to love and fight “Nolan Strong” through all of life’s struggles. Nolan Scully embodied the true spirit of a Patriot.
Congratulations to Master Sergeant Damon D. Walker, our 2016 Patriot of the Year. As our first Patriot of the Year, MSG Walker donated $539 to the Charlotte Hall Veterans Home. MSG Walker served over 21 years in the U.S. Army, completing six deployments, including two to Iraq and three to Afghanistan. He also served as the Senior Military Instructor of the U.S. Army ROTC detachment at Georgetown University where he led and mentored future Army officers. The success of these young officers is a great source of pride for MSG Walker.
Congratulations to all of our nominees who were recognized during our Patriot Day Ceremony. Click on a name below to read more about these local heroes. Be inspired by their stories, and consider submitting a nomination for our next Patriot of the Year!
Corporal, St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office
Boy Scout Troop 1634
Corporal, Southern Maryland Police Department
Vasilios “Cup” Pappas
Lieutenant Colonel, US Marine Corps
Richard “Ricky” Brady
Chief, Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department
Timothy K Cameron
Sheriff, St Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office
Mishap Investigator, US Navy
Sergeant, St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office
Master Sergeant, US Army