Local resident Pauline Reed will be honored at 7 p.m. tonight at as this year's Flash Family Inspirational Award, recognizing the Island's top senior role model according to a city press release.
Reed will be recognized by the city and for her spirit of good sportsmanship or community leadership and who possesses an optimistic attitude and friendly demeanor while acting as a role model to others.
Pauline Reed is just such a person. She is awarded this honor for her community involvements including:
- Organizing activities to benefit preschoolers (’s Circus Mcgurkus), youth swimmers of all ages (), boys and girls scouts working on their winter badge
- Volunteering as the first female firefighter in King County
- Patrolling for over 30 years as a National Ski Patrol at Ski Acres and Alpental
- Organizing rowers into forming the Mercer Island Rowing Association a part of the Parks Department master plan
Pauline Reed moved to Mercer Island in 1967. Her first community involvement was through the Mercer Island Pre-School Association, including early organization of the well-loved Circus Mcgurkus, and the construction of the Dragon, at "Dragon Park". She was among the first members of the Mercer Island Country Club, and from the onset of its swim team was a regular volunteer for nearly two decades, as her children swam in the program. Pauline was an active parent who cheered on her children as they competed at the national level. Son Scott and daughter Carrie both rowed at Nationals. Scott later went on to win medals in the 1986 USA Olympic Sports festival held in Oklahoma. Carrie (MIHS 89, and a recipient of the MI athlete of the year award) represented the USA three years in Jr. World Championships, rowing in Szeged, Hungary, Milan, Italy, and Berlin, Germany.
By 1973, Pauline had become yet another "athletic" leader of the community by persisting against considerable "hazing" to become the first female firefighter in not only our community but in King County as well. She continued as first a volunteer then a part-time paid firefighter for a decade. Many Mercer Island children remember her as the lady firefighter who taught them CPR. She was an EMT, in Dr. Copass' first class for other than Seattle firefighters.
Pauline's volunteer career grew to include the National Ski Patrol by 1976, and she was awarded National rank #6465, for service at Ski Acres and Alpental, where she patrolled for over 30 years. She left only three years ago when ordered by her doctors to stop hauling toboggans.
She was often recruited by Mercer Island Boy and Girl Scout troops to assist in winter badge outings, and served as a troop leader for several years.
Pauline helped organize rowers into forming the Mercer Island Rowing Association, which is part of the Parks Department master plan.
Pauline has been physically active and setting an example in our community of how to both enjoy sports and use them for community service as well for over 40 years. She now finds herself dealing with ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease. Despite the difficulties this disease poses, she hopes to set an example of how to include whatever sports are possible--with the help of other able-bodied athletes--in a life turned upside down. Her daughter Carrie now lives on the Island and is her primary caregiver. We can look for her being ridden all over our Island on a semi-recumbent bike peddled by her son-in-law, Grant Scull...or in Outdoors-For-All's beach wheelchair on any local sunny day, or hopefully on a sitz-ski as part of their handicapped program once ski season begins again.
The importance of sports in a healthy community could not have had a better advocate! On behalf of the Flash Family, the Department of Youth and Family Services, and the City of Mercer Island, thank you, Pauline, for all you have given to several communities in Washington.