HAMILTON, Ga. — A school bus driver and student here were recognized by the American Red Cross last week for helping save a student who was choking while on the bus last fall.
On Oct. 5, Mary Beth Hudson, a driver with Harris County School District, was transporting students home from Mulberry Creek Elementary School when fourth-grade student Kaitlyn Blackmon notified her that another student on the bus was choking, according to a news release from the district. Hudson said she immediately stopped the bus, pulled over, and then used the training taught to her by the American Red Cross to remove the object and help the student breathe normally again.
Hudson was awarded the Red Cross's “Certificate of Merit,” the organization's highest honor given to nominated individuals who use their skills, knowledge, and related training to help save lives. Only 200 people across the U.S. each year receive the award, according to Adelaide Kirk, the executive director of the West Central Georgia Chapter of the American Red Cross. Blackmon was also awarded for her quick thinking during the situation, and was given the Red Cross’s Certificate of Exemplary Personal Action, an award given to individuals who recognize a problem and take action.
“We are so thankful the student was okay, for Kaitlyn noticing and calling for help, and for Mrs. Hudson’s training and quick thinking,” said Cheryl Johnson, the transportation director for Harris County School District. “It was wonderful to see both Mrs. Hudson and Kaitlyn recognized by the American Red Cross with these distinguished awards.”
View a video and photos of Hudson and Blackmon receiving their awards, posted on Harris County School District’s Facebook page, below.
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