Lots of 6-year-olds pretend to be superheroes, but a local boy can call himself just that after making a lifesaving phone call Thursday night.
Noah Oliveros, 6, was eating dinner with his mom, Cynthia. He said she had just told him not to eat a piece of pork chop with too much fat on it because they’re hard to chew when she started choking.
He said he tried to call his grandma first, but she didn’t answer the phone, so he called 911.
The operator asked what his address was, but he wasn’t sure. He was able to give her details about what his house looked like through his tears, down to the cars parked out front and the “Welcome” sign that would greet first responders.
“It’s yellow and it has a ‘Welcome’ sign on it and it has a black door, and it has gray and silver cars,” Noah said.
When he was talking to the newspaper about the call, he wasn’t convinced he knew how to call 911, but Cynthia was adamant that she didn’t dial the number for him.
While Noah was on the phone with the 911 operator, his mom could be heard choking in the background.
“You better guys hurry up, OK?” Noah said. “I’m worried.”
The 911 operator asked Noah to step outside so he could see first responders coming to the home.
“I’m not far, I don’t think,” Noah told the dispatcher.
He was able to stay on the phone with the dispatcher until the first responder on scene, Glen Alpine Fire Chief Adam Marlowe, arrived.
“I’m just worried about my mommy,” Noah said to the dispatcher.
Throughout the call, the dispatcher told Noah what a good job he was doing.
When he spoke to the newspaper Friday, Noah said the first responders told him he did a good job. He was a little teary-eyed when he recalled the incident.
“I was sobbing after that,” Noah said of the moments after emergency responders saved his mom. “We sat down (hugging).”
The News Herald asked Noah how he felt about saving his mom’s life. He said he wasn’t convinced he was a hero, but he thought he did what he needed to do.
“I think I was brave enough,” he said.
His mom thought he was brave enough, too.
“I was very impressed at how he was able to describe,” Cynthia said. “I was impressed ... I’m glad he knew enough information, too.”
She couldn’t remember any of the phone call. While Noah was on the phone, she was trying to do the Heimlich maneuver on herself.
“I have no recollection of that,” Cynthia said, “except for the first responder coming in the house.”
Marlowe said he praised Noah when he got to get to the Oliveros’ home.
“I actually congratulated him,” Marlowe said. “I told him he did a really good job with everything, I gave him like a little fist bump at the end too.”
It’s important for kids to know how to call 911, and when to make the call.
“I would say it’s very important to let them know when and how to do it, as far as just dialing 911 and telling what’s wrong,” Marlowe said. “It’s not a toy; you only use it in emergencies.”
Noah knew exactly what to do when he called 911.
“He made me proud doing exactly what he needed to do,” Marlowe said. “He kind of set an example for other kids to follow.”
Noah gave some advice for anyone else who has to make that call.
“They should stay on the phone for seven minutes,” he joked about his own 911 call, which lasted almost eight minutes while the dispatchers tried to figure out his own address.
Cynthia said he now knows what road he lives on, but hopefully he won’t be having to make any more 911 calls in the future.
Noah gave the emergency responders who helped his mom high-fives as they left his house.
“I want to tell all of them thank you,” Noah said.
She promised him some new toys for being so brave during the call.
“This morning he reminded me,” she said. “Whenever I mentioned the toys, he was like, ‘Can we go get my toys?’ I was like, ‘I mean, we have to go to work and school.’ But he was like ‘I saved your life.’”
Noah thinks he knows exactly what kind of toys he wants for his heroic act.
“Maybe the 49-cent ones,” Noah said. His mom explained that means Hot Wheels. “Maybe I can get two.”