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Dedham Teens Recognized for Helping Citizen in Distress

Three Dedham High School students helped a citizen who they found enduring a heart attack on the side of the road.

The Dedham Board of Selectmen with Sean Hayes, Ty Walko and Madailein McLaughlin.
The Dedham Board of Selectmen with Sean Hayes, Ty Walko and Madailein McLaughlin.

The Dedham Board of Selectmen honored three Dedham High School juniors Thursday night for their efforts in aiding a citizen in distress last weekend.

Madailein McLaughlin, Sean Hayes and Ty Walko all received certificates of honor for their actions on Saturday, when they helped a woman who was having a medical emergency on the side of the road of Mount Vernon Street. 

"We pulled over to talk to her," Walko said Thursday night. "It was a little hectic."

Added McLaughlin, "She didn't want us to call 911 at first, because she said she was going to be okay. But it did not look like she was going to be okay. We called 911 and they came quickly."

The three had been driving back from a job training session at Blue Hills when they discovered the woman, whom police and emergency medical technicians later learned was having an asthma attack that led to a heart attack, according to Dedham Police Officer Matthies. 

"When I arrived, the three were with an older woman who was having a real hard time breathing," Mathis said. "They showed compassion to this person when a lot of people would have just driven by. That woman had someone to hold onto and talk to. They're just a few of the very good Dedham High students."

Selectmen Chair Michael Butler honored the three with a certificate of achievement and recognition for their fast-thinking. 

"She's really lucky that these three passed when they did," he said. "We're very, very proud."

Selectmen Sarah MacDonald, who became emotionally moved speaking about the youths' actions, told the three they were great examples for others in town, and Selectmen Paul Reynolds acknowledged that the result could have turned out much worse had they not stopped.

"You got there and one never knows what could have happened, and that lady's life was really in your hands," Selectmen Paul Reynolds told the teens. "It was the good work you did that day, but it's also the inspiration for everybody else. The impact that you have, you'll probably never be able to calculate it."

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