Several children were recently recognized for “Making the Right Call” during a ceremony at Yorkshire Volunteer Fire Department. “Make the Right Call” recognizes children who call 9-1-1 regarding emergencies they witnessed over the past year.
Police Capt. Ted McInteer helped with the ceremony and said he was pleased to recognize the children and their families. “No one calls 9-1-1 to tell us they’re having a good day. When they call
something catastrophic has happened in their life. They’ve witnessed something. They’ve been the victim of something. In some way, they need some type of help. The children we’ll recognize today knew what to do in a time of crisis. As family members you should be proud of what you did to instruct them and teach them how to use 9-1-1 and how to use it correctly.”
A few of the children who dialed 9-1-1 to report emergencies said the experience was nerve-wracking. Still, they managed to hold it together while they called in reports of domestic violence, car accidents, family sickness, attempted robbery and home accidents, among other things.
When Katrina Mendez was nine years old, she called 9-1-1 to report that her mother was ill and translated back-and-forth with the call taker and another family member in two languages. “It was very scary, but I was very calm because I knew my mom was sick. It all happened so fast.”
Erica George was seven years old when she made an emergency call to tell call takers that the ex-husband of her mother’s roommate was causing trouble. “I was really scared, but I ran upstairs to my mom’s room, and I ran to the phone and called 9-1-1.”
Rebecca Boice called 9-1-1 to report an erratic driver near her home in Riverview Estates. Rebecca, and her mother who was driving their car, thought a man in another car had fallen asleep at the wheel when he crashed his car and buckled a guardrail.
“Thank goodness it was there because he would have fallen into a 40-foot gully,” Rebecca, now 16, said of the guardrail. “As soon as I got over the five seconds of shock, I was rummaging, trying to get my mother’s phone out, and I just dialed 9-1-1 and did my best to remain as calm as I could,” said Rebecca.
Police later charged the man with impaired driving.
Rebecca’s father, Randy Boice, said he and her mother were glad they trained Rebecca in how to make emergency calls. “I’m very proud of her reaction. From an early age, we taught her the number 9-1-1 for an emergency..”
Prince William Department of Fire and Rescue Chief Kevin McGee said things might have turned out differently if the children had not had the presence of mind to call during their emergencies. “We can’t help anybody unless we get that call. Getting the right information to tell us what units we should send. Thank you for what you’ve done to intervene in an emergency. I’m very proud of you. ”
For a list of all of the children who were recognized on Saturday Oct. 12, 2013 at the Yorkshire Volunteer Fire Department, visit here
. To watch the entire ceremony, visit here