In true patriotic fashion, the St. Petersburg SAR’s May 2018 meeting celebrated heroism, valor, and education. The event was opened by a presentation of colors by the chapter’s very own, newly formed Color Guard and followed by a beautiful rendition of the Star Spangled Banner by vocalist Kaitlyn Fulsom.

The most noteworthy event of the day was the chapter awarding the Law Enforcement Commendation Award to Pinellas County Deputy Amanda Grissinger for her heroism in saving the lives of two civilians. This award is given only to law enforcement officers who have gone beyond the call of duty and acted in a heroic fashion.

The presentation of the award was made by retired Marine and Chapter President Robert Rogers, with Corporal Grissinger’s superiors, Sgt. Horton and Capt. Leiner, in attendance. Both her superiors spoke highly of Grissinger’s accomplishments and deserving of the commendation, specifically emphasizing her ability to make correct, life-saving decisions even in high-stress situations. To learn more about Corporal Grissinger’s heroic efforts, please watch the award ceremony above.

Following the law enforcement ceremony, Eric Soderlund was awarded the War Time Service Medal for his military service in three different theatres across the world. Alongside the attendees, his parents and family were present to commemorate the occasion.

Before the lunch break, Jenna Demott of the Clearwater Harbor C.A.R. gave a comprehensive update on the work and efforts of their society and thanked by the SAR and DAR for their continued support. Several local DAR chapters were represented at the meeting including Clearwater DAR, Caravel DAR, and Princess Hirrihigua DAR. Miss Demott accepted a $200 donation from the St. Petersburg SAR on behalf of the Clearwater Harbor C.A.R.

After the lunch break, St. Petersburg SAR’s Vice President David Chestnut presented about the chapter’s newly formed Color Guard and the importance behind the name that had been chosen.

Ending off the day’s agenda Dylan Miksch was presented with his 1st Place Certificate a Medal, and a check for $200 for winning the chapter’s Knight Essay Content. The Knight Essay Contest is for high school students and is designed to support the propagation of true American history in the education system.

This was the first filmed St. Petersburg SAR event and a recording has been made available to the general public who may wish to experience one of our meetings for themselves, see the video below. Additionally, the general public is always welcome to attend any meeting hosted by the St. Petersburg SAR, simply email