ANDREW L. HANNAH

Obituary
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  • "Drew was a great American who was dedicated, passionate,..."
    - Glenn Marchi
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  • "Drew, may you rest in peace. I will miss you a whole lot...."
    - Dwan
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HANNAH--Andrew Lee, 62, a longtime humanitarian organization executive, passed away suddenly at his home in Onancock, VA on Sunday, December 9th. Born in 1950, Hannah is the son of the late Virginia Sterling Hannah and Andrew Lee Hannah of Charleston, SC. "Drew," as he is known to friends and family, divided his time between New Canaan, CT and his home in Onancock on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. He attended the Notre Dame International High School, Virginia Military Institute and graduated from the University of South Carolina with a BA degree. Drew spent his entire career leading charitable causes, serving as a non-profit executive for more than 20 years. Previous to devoting his career to humanitarian causes, Drew was a contractor building homes across Colorado through the 1980s and 1990s. An accomplished skier and instructor, Drew spent his weekends teaching skiing to handicapped children. During that time, Drew also helped found the “Christmas in April Program” in Philadelphia (CIAP) in 1988. Since its founding, CIAP and its 1,000-plus volunteer force have helped hundreds of families rehabilitate and restore their homes throughout the west and North Philadelphia areas. He went on to become an executive with AmeriCares, a leading United States-based non-governmental humanitarian organization. One of Drew's greatest joys was as Director of AmeriCares “Camp AmeriKids,” a camp designed to enhance lives of youth living with HIV/AIDS. Following the aftermath of 9/11, Drew co-founded Bridge Foundation along with Stephen B. Skakel. The Bridge Foundation provides emergency and long term humanitarian assistance in response to disasters - both man-made and natural -- across the U.S. and around the world. For the past decade, the foundation has led corporate and privately sponsored missions to such disaster hot spots as Darfur Sudan, Eastern Chad, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Iraq, Congo, Gabon, Albania, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Grenada and the U.S. Gulf Coast following Hurricane Katrina. More recently, Drew led Bridge to facilitate humanitarian aid relief to Louisiana following hurricane Isaac and across the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area after Hurricane Sandy. Previously with Americares, Drew led missions to Bosnia, Cuba, Kosovo, Somalia, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Chechnya, Azerbaijan, Georgia and North Korea. A hands-on expert on humanitarian relief issues, Drew, has been a sought-after source for media commentary on humanitarian relief issues. He has been interviewed by several news organizations such as The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Time, Newsweek and Business Week. He has also appeared on programs across the broadcast network spectrum including the CBS Evening News, NBC News with Tom Brokaw, the Today Show, Good Morning America, Larry King Live, the Charlie Rose Show, FOX News, CNN, and many others. Drew has also provided government testimony to the House Committee on International Relations and has participated on foreign relations-focused panel discussions at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, the University of Notre Dame Business School and the Woodrow Wilson Center. Through his work and his personal faith, Drew had a deep, personal commitment to take action on events and help people and families find their way through the most horrific of situations. Whether it was leading one of the first humanitarian airlifts to Haiti after the devastating earthquake, or delivering food, cooking oil (and candy) to orphanages in war-ravaged Afghanistan, Drew lived for these missions. When the call came in to rush medical supplies to a children's hospital in Iraq, or, closer to home, delivering bottled water and generators to power up an emergency operations center after a hurricane, Drew never said it couldn't be done. "We'll put our best people on it," was his stock response. And he delivered. Drew Hannah changed the lives of many people around the world and was fearless in his pursuits to help others. He also brought out the best of every person and situation. An accomplished chef, Drew was also an animal lover and a genuine connoisseur of fine wine and food. But most of all, he cherished the friendships he created over a lifetime of helping people. Drew is survived by his sister, Sterling Hannah, of Charleston, SC and his beloved dogs Raymond "Floyd" and Addie. There will be a remembrance celebration in his home town of Onancock, VA, Sunday, January 20, 2013, at Mallards at the Wharf between 2pm and 6pm. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Bridge Foundation, PO Box 388 New Canaan, CT 06840, or the ESSPCA, PO Box 164, Onley, VA 23418. Memory tributes may be shared with the family at the website: www. williamsfuneralhomes.com Services by the Williams-Onancock Funeral Home.

Published in The New York Times on Dec. 23, 2012
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