MANUEL REZZENDES, JR.
1990 INDUCTION TO THE RHODE ISLAND AQUATIC HALL OF FAME
Manny began his water safety career in the late 1930’s at the Providence Central Boys’ Club as an assistant swimming instructor under Joseph “Bud” Latham.
After several years at the Boys’ Club, Manny went to work for the American Red Cross as a Water Safety Field Representative in Alexandria, Virginia. For the next 25 years, Manny became a legend in the field of professional Red Cross workers. He served the Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Jersey area as a Water Safety Field Representative, and he directed three national aquatic schools…Camp Pequot, Gardner Lakes, and St. Thomas Moore, all located in Connecticut. These aquatic schools were considered among the most outstanding in the eastern area.
Manny is a member of the Commodore Longfellow Society Hall of Fame-International Order of the Golden Whale. In Rhode Island there are only three other Red Cross workers who have received the Longfellow Award, and they are also in the R.I. Aquatic Hall of Fame.
Manny should also be remembered for his outstanding work during natural disasters in our country. He served as a Mass Care Director when Hurricane Camile came into the Gulf Coast. For his dedication in this area of service, the Red Cross offered Manny the post of Disaster Field Representative. However, he decided to stay with his favorite area of work….water safety.
In 1974, Manny retired from the Red Cross, and took a position with the St. Thomas Moore Prep School in Connecticut.