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Western Sierra students' quick thinking may have saved a life

Seventh-graders help man during stroke
By: John Goldschneider, special to the Placer Herald
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Every quarter, students at Western Sierra Collegiate Academy are recognized in an assembly for demonstrating what the school calls “C-PREP” traits: Committed, Prepared, Respectful, Engaged and Professional behavior.

On Oct. 12, three seventh-grade girls – Elizabeth Blackmore, Julia Totty and Jordan Adame – each received a C-PREP award for reporting to the office when a parent, Larry Brohman, was seen acting strangely in the halls. Administrators searched the campus to find Brohman suffering from a stroke in the parking lot, and were able to call paramedics in time. 
 
“We were just putting stuff away and I was closing up my locker when it happened,” said Jordan, recalling the incident.
 
Between classes, the three girls were together at their lockers when they saw Brohman  drop his keys on his way down the hall. When they tried to give them back to him, he was unresponsive, continuing down the hall before exiting through an emergency exit door.
 
“He just gave me really weird looks, and you could tell that he wasn’t OK because of the looks he was giving me,” Elizabeth recalled. “He looked really confused.”
 
Recognizing that something was wrong, the three of them went to the office to tell an adult what they had seen.
 
“They gave me a really good description,” said Scott Cro-son, dean of students, who responded to their report, “so when I went out and double-checked the parking lot and found Larry in his car, I was able to recognize him as the same person. The fact that he dropped his keys was a blessing. If he’d had his keys on him, he could have driven off, which could have ended very badly.”
 
Crosson called paramedics, who were able to give Brohman the medical attention that he needed. He has since made a full recovery, which might not have happened had the girls not reported his behavior.
 
“If these girls did not bring it to our attention, Larry could have been sitting out in his car for hours, and no one might have even noticed.
 
It could have been tragic,” Crosson commented. “The experts that showed up to help said there’s about an hour window after a stroke before things can really go downhill quickly, so the timeliness of the girls bringing it to my attention was perfectly orchestrated.”
 
The girls have yet to get a chance to speak with Brohman since the incident, though they are eager to see how he is doing.
 
“My mom’s still thinking of getting his contact information so we can meet him and just talk to him,” Julia said.
 
In addition to being formally recognized in front of their peers for their actions, the girls’ names have been put into a drawing for prizes alongside the other C-PREP students of the academic quarter.
 
“I really want to be principal for the day,” Jordan laughed.
 
 “At our school, you get what you celebrate, and it becomes the norm instead of things being just about the corrective side.” Crosson explained. “We build character-quality training in alongside our high academic standards, and the behavior that these girls demonstrated embodies that. We are very proud of them.”