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Five-Year-Old Sworn in as Junior Paramedic

The Brooklyn Paper
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A five-year-old boy from Jamaica, Queens who called 911 after his pregnant mother passed out in their home was sworn in as a “Junior Paramedic” on August 12 at the FDNY Headquarters in downtown Brooklyn last week.

The boy’s mother, Jennifer Garay, suffers from a medical condition that makes her prone to seizures. She had taught her son, Tahlique, at a young age what to do in case of an emergency.

After Garay became unresponsive last Wednesday, the boy promptly called 911. He provided the dispatcher with their address, and was able to give details about his mother’s medical history, including her seizures.

An audio recording of the 911 call was played at the swearing in. On the recording, the boy can be heard telling the dispatcher that his “mommy passed out a little bit.”

He was also able to follow all of the dispatcher’s instructions. He unlocked the door so that help could enter, and he put his hand above his mother’s face to feel if she was breathing.

The FDNY awarded the boy with the title of Junior Paramedic to demonstrate the necessity of young people learning proper safety precautions.

Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta said, “This young boy sets an example for every child in this city about the importance of calling 911 in an emergency.”

Joining the boy at the MetroTech ceremony was Scoppetta, Chief of Department Salvatore Cassano, Deputy Chief of EMS Command John McFarland, and the EMTs and paramedics who responded to the call.

The boy’s mother was also present. She has recovered and expects to give birth to her second child, a girl, next month.

Tahlique was also given an FDNY “job shirt” with his name and new title on the front.

“This young boy sets an example for every child in this city about the importance of calling 911 in any emergency,” Scoppetta said.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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