A high school student who resides on Fort Myers Beach was among a group of monthly honorees that were applauded at the "Do The Right Thing" Student Recognition awards ceremony by the Lee County School Board at Lee County Public Education Center, 2855 Colonial Blvd., Fort Myers on Thursday.
Beach resident Dana Miller, a ninth grade student at Cypress Lake High School, received the recognition for the care of a friend who experienced an asthmatic emergency medical situation.
According to Program Director John McGraw of the Lee County Sheriff's Office, the nomination letter stated that Dana came to the aid of a friend after that person texted her during an asthma attack on a school bus. Dana was on her way to school in another bus when the incident happened.
Beach resident Dana Miller receives a trophy and certificate at the “Do The Right Thing” Student Recognition awards ceremony last Thursday.
"The friend having the attack was unable to go up and inform the bus driver of this medical emergency," the nomination letter stated. "Dana's bus was pulling into the school, at this time, and Dana informed her bus driver of the emergency on the other bus, and asked if there was some way contact could be made with the other driver. Dana knew the number of her friend's bus, and Bus Dispatch was notified. Dana also made sure the school was notified.
"When the bus rolled into school property a few minutes later, school officials were waiting and appropriate medical help summoned. Dana proceeded to help calm her friend, as the severity of the attack was very frightening to the student. Dana's calm, mature, quick thinking helped her friend and averted a more serious escalation of the medical emergency that day. On another occasion Dana helped the same friend breathe slowly, and keep her calm when she began having the early stages of an asthma attack. Another time Dana responded by getting an inhaler for this student."
Dana's mother, Debbie Baker, stated her daughter has suffered from past experiences with asthmatic symptoms and knows "how scary it can be to feel anxious and not be able to breathe."
As a nurse, Baker said she sees "some of the best people do things every day that don't get recognized" and is proud of her daughter's actions.
"She is a very caring young woman who always tries to be supportive and helps her friends when they are facing difficulties," she said. "I am very proud of her caring heart and her rational thinking while her friend was going through a tough time. What she did on those occasions was very important to an asthmatic."
Dana does not plan to follow in her mother's footsteps. She has a passion for singing, is currently enrolled in the Vocal program at Cypress Lake School of the Arts and plans to be a Music or History teacher if she is not singing professionally.
McGraw has said the goal of "Do The Right Thing" is to reinforce positive behavior among youths and to establish students as role models for their peers. Each month throughout the 2013-14 school year, the Lee County Sheriff's Office honors the positive actions of our community's students through the "Do The Right Thing" program.
"Do The Right Thing" partners law enforcement, local government, businesses and Lee County educational community together in an effort to make a lasting positive impact on the community's young adults. The program focuses on humanitarian concern, honesty, integrity, positive decision-making and heroism.