High school upperclassmen receive ‘Medal of Valor’ for heroism

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FLORENCE, Ala. — Heroism was shown by two young men on February 9, 2017 when an SUV accidentally drove into the side of Waterloo High School. Two pedestrians, including a 9-year-old girl, were hit and injured. The young girl was trapped underneath the vehicle.

Dacota George and Chandler Cole, who both so happened to have trained with the Waterloo Volunteer Fire Department Explorer program, were nearby, saw the accident, and took action.

“We just looked up and saw the car hit the building and we just knew we had to get over and make sure everybody’s okay,” Dacota said. That’s also when they saw the girl underneath the SUV.

Today at the Lauderdale County Courthouse, both young men were awarded for their quick thinking and bravery. Shoals Ambulance presented them with the Medal of Valor. This medal is no common honor.

“We have never presented someone from Shoals Ambulance an award like this,” said Blake Hargett with Shoals Ambulance. “This will be the first one.”

After the presentation, Dacota’s mom showed me the picture below of both Chandler and Dacota.

Turns out these young men have been “partners in crime” as she put it, for a long time.

“Partners in crime” Dacota George and Chandler Cole

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