Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Language Brokering Hero

Marjorie Faulstich Orellana (see September 19 and November 1 posts) has sent me this heartwarming story.
A bilingual 4th grader [11 years old] hurt in an Arizona bus accident that killed six people and injured more than a dozen others translated from an ambulance stretcher for busy rescue workers as they hurried to set up a triage center, authorities said Saturday.
Oscar Rodriguez of Las Vegas, Nevada., was labeled a hero by firefighters and paramedics for helping them communicate with non-English speaking passengers just after Friday's pre-dawn crash on an interstate.
They presented him with gifts and a certificate that reads "Hero of the day" during a visit with him at a Phoenix hospital Saturday.
"This kid stayed calm and was brave more than any other veteran I've worked with," said Kenneth Leslie, a paramedic who, with his partner, was the first to arrive at the scene.
The bus was traveling from the central Mexican state of Zacatecas to Los Angeles.

Associated Press. Paramedics hail 'hero' boy from Arizona bus crash. USA Today, March 7, 2010.

Photo: El

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