This story begins in March of 2002. It was the middle of the night and Beth Jewell was manning the Isle of Wight 911 dispatch center.
“I remember her calling in, hearing their child wasn’t breathing. She was seizing and she stopped breathing,” said Jewell.
The caller was the mom of 11-month-old Cassie Walker. Dispatcher Jewell walked the mother through CPR and eventually the baby began breathing again.
It wasn’t part of the job, but days later Jewell followed up to see how Cassie was doing.
“After she saved my life she’s the only dispatcher that called my mom after she saved my life to check up on me and that’s pretty great,” said Cassie.
Now that she’s older, Cassie wanted to meet Jewell to say, “thank you for saving my life. Without you I would not be here and I wouldn’t be the young lady that I am.”
With the help of her teachers, Cassie organized a ceremony to honor Beth Jewell and present her with a service recognition award.
Cassie is part of the Public Law and Safety Academy at Bethel High School. She just completed a course in emergency telecommunications and is now a certified dispatcher, just like Jewell. Although certified she can’t start working as a dispatcher until she’s 18.
“To inspire someone 16 years later to want to do the job that I do, that I enjoy so much, it’s really nice,” said Jewell.