MFD honors young hero
By KIRK BOXLEITNER
Marysville Globe Reporter
February 17, 2009 · Updated 2:17 PM
MARYSVILLE — Marysville Fire District personnel gave one local girl a very special Valentine’s Day weekend in recognition of her emergency safety smarts.
Mikayla DeGarzia was only five years old when she was staying the night with her grandmother last November, but when her grandmother fell unconscious, Mikayla quickly called first her mother, then 9-1-1. The dispatcher kept Mikayla on the line until Marysville Fire District emergency crews arrived at the house. Even though Mikayla didn’t know her grandmother’s address, reverse 9-1-1 made it possible for the dispatcher to send emergency personnel to her location.
On Feb. 15, Marysville Fire District personnel celebrated Mikayla’s life-saving response at their Shoultes Station with a certificate, a gift and root beer floats.
“Mikayla learned about calling 9-1-1 while she was in preschool,” said Kristen Thorstenson, public education specialist and public information officer for the Marysville Fire District. “This should remind adults about the importance of teaching children, even young ones, when and how to call 9-1-1. They can get the number fairly easily, but they might get confused about when to call. Talk to them in basic, simple language about calling when an adult can’t wake up, when a fire happens without an adult, or when an intruder is in the home, and remind them it isn’t for fun.”
Thorstenson noted that, as children get older, adults can supply them with more information for 9-1-1 calls, including their last names, phone numbers and street addresses.Contact Marysville Globe Reporter Kirk Boxleitner at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-659-1300 Ext. 5052.