7-year-old Cameron Simoncic knew something wasn’t right as soon as he got home from Ellen Woodside Elementary. His father, who is diabetic, was unresponsive in the kitchen.
“My dad has diabetes, and he has these episodes, and whenever it happens, his brain can’t function,” says Cameron.
Cameron tried to use his dad’s cell phone to call for help but didn’t know the phone’s password and was unaware that there’s a way to call emergency services without unlocking the phone. The house doesn’t have a landline, so Cameron ran next door to get a neighbor for help. When no one answered, he made a split-second decision that probably saved his dad’s life.
The second-grader hopped on his bike and pedaled off down the street toward his grandparents’ house, crossing four lanes of traffic to get on Highway 25.
As luck would have it, Cameron’s old teacher from first grade, Keller Sutherland, happened to be on her way home on that very road at the same time. She was having a rough day and wondering if her life’s work really meant anything when she saw a small child riding his bike down the busy road and felt something must be wrong.
The mom of two felt her motherly instincts kick in, and she decided to pull over to assess the situation. It was then that she discovered the child was Cameron and learned that he was looking for help for his dad, who was slowly dying of hypoglycemia. She dialed 911, and Cameron, chauffered by Sutherland, showed the emergency crew the way back to his dad’s house.
Once they’d arrived, emergency personnel treated Cameron’s dad with an injection of glucagon to bring him back to consciousness. Then they fed him a pack of crackers, which Sutherland had just bought before leaving school that day.
So many tiny miracles and brave choices added up to one big life-saving event for one man, and the lives of Cameron and Sutherland were also changed in the process. Cameron is being touted as a hero, and Sutherland says she’s been reminded that she has a purpose in this world.
“I truly believe this was not a coincidence,” Sutherland says. “There’s no doubt that God placed me where He did when He needed me.”
Check out the full story in the video below.
This story should serve as a reminder to show your kids how to make an emergency call on a cell phone even when it’s locked and to review emergency plans on a regular basis.
Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?