When Hurricane Sandy rocked the East Coast last year, first responders played a vital role in keeping citizens in New York, New Jersey and elsewhere safe, and now they're being thanked for their exemplary efforts. JetBlue recently handed out dozens of flight vouchers to first responders and their families who live in some of the New Jersey towns that were hit hardest by the powerful storm, The Star-Ledger reports.

Each town selected its own recipients of the prizes, with emergency workers in Middletown, Sea Bright, Seaside Heights and Toms River all earning the vouchers. Among those who were honored was Jane Geoghegan, who volunteers for Toms River's Silverton Emergency Medical Services. The 73-year-old, who has been volunteering for nearly 50 years, helped rescue people while she was unable to get into her heavily damaged home. 

"It's just nice that they're doing this. I couldn't believe it. Out of all the bad things that happened, all this time. This is really nice," she told the newspaper. "We haven't been the recipients of too many funds that are out there."

Although it's been nearly a year since Hurricane Sandy hit, many communities along the Jersey shore are still recovering. In fact, earlier this month the Statue of Liberty re-opened for the first time since closing after the storm due to damage.