MedStar honors children who saved lives with calls

FORT WORTH -- The seven children recognized Thursday night by MedStar as heroes have already received their reward, medical personnel said.

Saving the life of a loved one is its own reward.

It was 3 a.m. Nov. 14 when 12-year-old Mikayla Preston and her 10-year-old sister, Marissa Preston, were awakened by their mother's diabetic emergency. Tammy Preston was unconscious and was later found to have a blood-sugar level of 18 (80 to 120 is in the normal range).

Tammy Preston said she often has difficulty maintaining her blood-sugar levels while she is sleeping.

The two sisters worked together to keep their mother breathing until help arrived, said Tammy Moore, MedStar communications manager.

"I was afraid she might not make it through the night," Marissa said.

Talking to the 911 call-taker and her father, who helped teach the girls how to be calm during an emergency, helped keep the pair on an even keel, Mikayla and her mother said.

"Diabetics can be very scary," said Valerie Carson, the 911 call-taker who talked to the girls. "They jumped right in and secured their mom's airway, and did a great job until the firefighters came."

The children honored Thursday each received a plaque, a T-shirt and a recording of the calls, Moore said.

MedStar provides ambulance service to 15 Tarrant County cities, answering more than 100,000 emergency calls each year.

MITCH MITCHELL, 817-390-7752