Sayre Christian Village honors Ky. National Guard for support during pandemic

Sayre Christian Village CEO Karen Venis and resident Paul Frederick, a World War II Veteran,...
Sayre Christian Village CEO Karen Venis and resident Paul Frederick, a World War II Veteran, presented the 63rd Theater Aviation Brigade of the Kentucky National Guard with the Guardian Angel Award on Friday, December 3, 2021.(Jeremy Tombs)
Published: Dec. 3, 2021 at 5:27 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - A Kentucky National Guard brigade received two awards Friday afternoon for its support of the Sayre Christian Village during the pandemic.

Sayre Christian Village has been hit hard by the pandemic. CEO Karen Venis said it wasn’t a matter of if, but when they would need help from the Kentucky National Guard.

The National Guard team helped with housekeeping and maintenance for weeks at a time, but they also took the time to bond with residents, and get them through the tough times.

“All of them are just as nice as could be,” said resident Paul Frederick. “You couldn’t made a nicer bunch of fellas in the world.”

Frederick, a World War II veteran, says he felt an instant connection to these guardsmen.

“I knew they’d be disciplined, they’d be trustworthy, they’d be loyal and we would be safe,” Frederick said.

Frederick returned the favor to his new friends at the National Guard by helping to present them with the Guardian Angel Award.

“They were our guardian angels,” Venis said. “They still don’t know how much that means to us and to our campus.”

The guard team supported about 450 residents and staff during their time at the village, according to Venis.

Sergeant Major Paul Rezac says, while it was a privilege to be honored, it was easy to spend time and connect with people like Frederick.

“When Mr. Frederick and some of the others would come down and start visiting with us, we sat at a table for hours and start bringing out his World War II pictures,” said Rezac. ”Even though they served 40-50 years prior to us being there, they felt that instant bond”

The National Guard members also received the leading age distinguished service award for their “contributions toward the welfare of older persons”.

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