When sixth-grader Joshua Garcia fell to the ground just after arriving at Foster Elementary School the morning of Nov. 15, fifth-grader Taylor Kidd thought his friend was joking.
“I said, ‘Quit playing,’” said Taylor, 10, who lives in the same apartment complex as Joshua and walks to school with him. “But when I saw he was shaking, I knew it was serious.”
Joshua, 11, had just had a seizure. Another fifth-grader, DeAnthony Price, saw him on the ground and urged Taylor to use his cellphone to call 911.
“I kept pressing 811 instead,” Taylor said. “I was shaking and nervous. When I finally got them, I was talking too loud, and I said, ‘My friend just had a seizure.’”
Never miss a local story.
Fifth-grade math teacher Erick Pedroza was flagged down by two adults when he pulled into the parking lot at about 7:10 a.m.
He ran over and instructed the boys not to touch Joshua. And he checked the 11-year-old’s head to make sure he wasn’t injured in the fall.
After an ambulance arrived, Pedroza drove Taylor to inform Joshua’s mom about what had happened.
“He got out of the car in 3.5 seconds,” Taylor jokingly said of the teacher’s quick response.
Joshua spent the night at the hospital and returned to school the next Monday. He said he doesn’t remember the incident but is grateful for the help the boys gave.
The sixth-grader said it was his second seizure; the first occurred during summer school this year. He now takes medication for his epilepsy.
DeAnthony and Taylor will be honored at an upcoming Arlington City Council meeting. In the meantime, the boys received 11 good-behavior reward tickets from the school, giving them more chances to win prizes.
Taylor said he is getting the royal treatment at school these days, including when he asked for an apple juice box.
“They said, ‘Of course you can. You’re a hero.’ I felt like a rich man with apple juice,” he said.