Applause was replaced by the ringing of bells at the annual Salvation Army banquet Thursday. The clinging was a tribute to those who have helped with time, energy or love to the organization's self-proclaimed mission of hope.
The bells were forgotten, however, for a standing ovation when a posthumous award was given to David Birney, a past chair of the advisory board who died this past year. The Danville post created a David Bell Birney Spirit Award in his honor, and made him the first recipient. His wife, Ginny, and son, Rob, accepted the award.
"This is his Oscar," Ginny Birney said with a voice full of tears.
She thanked all the people who had given memorials to the Salvation Army in the Episcopalian bishop's honor.
"We will always be thinking of David," said Capt. Zachary Bell.
Future award recipients names will be engraved on a plaque that will hang in the building.