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Greg McQuade surprised with Ambassador of Hope Award

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- One of CBS 6's own was honored during a benefit concert Saturday night to raise money for youth mental health and suicide prevention programs.

Beacon Tree Foundation and sponsor VCU Health hosted the Trees of Hope 2018 youth concert at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.

"This moving program is an opportunity to hear stories of those helped, and is focused on hope, memorials and music," organizers said.

CBS 6 anchor and reporter Greg McQuade, who has emceed the event for the past five years, was surprised with the group's Ambassador of Hope Award.

The recipient of the ambassador award is a person in the community who takes "bold and innovative steps" toward erasing the stigma of mental illness, organizers said.

McQuade has featured stories about youth mental health and suicide in his weekly "Heroes Among Us" and "I Have A Story" features.

In one of these stories, McQuade introduced viewers to a Chesterfield mother urging teens to speak out after her son’s suicide.

“He called me on the phone, and because we don’t talk about suicide, I didn’t recognize the symptoms,” Anne Moss Rogers, president of the Beacon Tree Foundation, shared with McQuade in April of 2017.

“We made the promise that the last chapter of his life was going to be a new chapter for ours," she said. "Why are we brushing this under the rug? Silence has gotten us nowhere."

McQaude recently also won three of WTVR's nine prestigious regional Edward R. Murrow Awards.

The nine Murrow awards – a honor shared with just one other television station — were the most won by any local television station in the nation.