Hermon girl, 8, applauded for saving mom

Posted March 26, 2009, at 11:30 p.m.

HERMON, Maine — An 8-year-old Hermon girl was recognized Thursday for her calm, cool handling of a family health emergency.

Haley Gotlieb, a pupil at Hermon Elementary School, was presented a certificate of recognition by representatives of the Penobscot County Regional Communications Center in Bangor, which handles most of the emergency calls made in the county.

According to the RCC’s executive director, James Ryan Jr., Haley called 911 after her mother, Sharon Gotlieb, fell ill on Oct. 21 of last year.

It was the child’s grace under pressure that prompted the recognition, Betty Stone, a supervisor at the dispatch center, said Thursday.

“She did very well. She stayed calm. She answered all of the dispatcher’s questions. She followed the dispatcher’s instructions and she stayed on the line,” Stone said, adding, “She did everything perfectly.”

Stone said that Jaeme Ahern, who answered Haley’s call, nominated the child for recognition, which remained a surprise until Thursday, when the certificate was given to her during an assembly for second-, third- and fourth-graders. During the assembly, the pupils learned about the dos and don’ts of calling 911, including when to call 911, when not to call 911 and what constitutes a true emergency.

The certificate was “signed” by Red E. Fox, whose paw print appears in the lower right corner. Red E. Fox is the mascot that emergency communications personnel use in their educational outreach efforts.

Others who came to the school to applaud Haley included Penobscot County Deputies Jay Hallett and Peter Stone, and Hermon ambulance personnel, Ryan said.

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