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Children's Village honors 3 for heroism

May 16, 2009|By MARIE GILBERT

HAGERSTOWN -- A boy's voice came on the line and, instinctively, the 911 operator knew it wasn't a prank call.

His mother was suffering a reaction to her diabetes, he explained. She needed help.

For several years, Eric Lilly, 10, had been told what to do if his mother's blood sugar got too low. He already had given her peanut butter and Pepsi.

But she was having trouble talking, so he knew he needed to call 911.

That phone call could have saved his mother's life, dispatcher Jamie Glaze said.

"He did a great job," Glaze said. "While I spoke with him, he stayed calm, gave us the family's address and knew his mother's medical history. I was very impressed."

Saturday afternoon, Eric, a student at Boonsboro Elementary School, was one of three local children honored for their heroic efforts by being inducted into the Children's Village Life Safety Hall of Fame.

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Also recognized during the ceremony were Cheska Knable, 10, a student at Broadfording Christian Academy, and Dylan Durboraw, 12, a student at Springfield Middle School.

Cheska called 911 last October when her mother began choking, remaining on the telephone with operators to receive important instructions and make sure paramedics could find her house.

Most recently, on April 20, Dylan's grandmother became semiconscious due to an adverse reaction to medication. He called 911, described the emergency and provided essential medical information as the dispatcher asked specific questions about his grandmother's condition.

All of the children are credited with knowing what to do, thanks to lessons learned at Children's Village of Washington County, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing free life safety education to elementary-school students.

The induction has become an annual event, said Rod Everett, president of the Children's Village Board of Directors.

"It's a way to honor those young people who, through training at Children's Village, have done extraordinary things," he said.

In addition to family and friends, also in attendance were the three dispatchers who handled the emergency calls, including Glaze, Anthony Barnes and Brian Beall.

Tina Bowers, who instructed two of the students at Children's Village, said the three honorees did all of the right things.

"They did a good job of staying calm in serious situations," she said. "Kids often are best at calling 911. Sometimes, adults can get frantic."

"I'm very proud of my grandson," said Dylan's grandmother, Judith Durboraw. "I wouldn't be alive if it wasn't for his quick thinking. I thank him every day."

The induction ceremony was held as part of Kids Alive Fest 2009. A combination open house/community safety day, the annual event featured a wide range of activities, including K-9 demonstrations, minicar rides, a bicycle rodeo and a fire hose spraying challenge.

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