BLUFFTON — Sydney Goodwin, just 7 years old, was awarded a Life Saving Award from Lima Memorial Health System Wednesday for calling 911 when her grandmother was unresponsive.
Goodwin’s grandmother, Karen Pifer, was experiencing extremely low blood sugar and was unresponsive when Goodwin found her.
She immediately tried calling her mother with no answer. Then, Goodwin dialed 911 and informed them of her grandma’s state and location.
“Her quick thinking really set the ball in motion in order for her grandma to be there and alive today without any neurological deficits,” said Doug LaRue, EMS Manager at Lima Memorial.
When the ambulance arrived, Pifer was labeled as critical condition. She eventually went into atrial fibrillation and was transferred to Lima Memorial where she was finally stabilized.
Once Pifer had regained consciousness and learned of her granddaughter’s actions, she said she immediately began crying.
“I taught her how to get into my iPhone, thank God, because if she couldn’t have gotten in, she wouldn’t have been able to call,” Pifer said. “She memorized that, she knew how to get into my phone. I’ve taught her [how to call 911], my daughters taught her, so she knew how to do it. But she knew the address, she knew where I lived, everything.”
Lima Memorial and LaRue presented the award to Goodwin at her school, Bluffton Elementary, and also used it as a learning opportunity for her first-grade classmates.
“Anything we can do to promote the reason to call emergency medical services is a win-win,” LaRue said. “A lot of times, time is muscle and if we don’t get there early enough, we’re not going to have a good outcome. In this case, Sydney called very early on, the squad got there, she was unresponsive, and the patient ended up having a remarkable outcome.”
When LaRue heard about Goodwin’s heroics, he said he wanted to honor her.
“As soon as I heard about this from Beaverdam Fire Department, I was very intrigued so we set the ball in motion to come and honor Sydney on a job well done,” he said. “Not only that, it brings awareness to calling 911 in these types of emergencies. You’re never too young to call.”
Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.