Quick-Thinking Student Patrols Accorded 'Hero in the Making' Status


(Friday, May 4, 2007 11:09 AM EDT)

What would you do in an emergency if you were in fifth grade?

Logan Bernstein, Raquel Mejia and Lauren Riviera from Key Elementary School knew exactly what to do. For their efforts, they will be honored as “Heroes in the Making” at the May 12 James B. Hunter III Community Hero Awards, part of the annual Neighborhood Day celebration.

“I'm excited,” said Key principal Marjorie Myers, who nominated them for the award. “It's nice to recognize kids doing good things.”

Bernstein, Mejia and Riviera all pitched in to help fellow student Isabel Ureña-Dones, who was injured in a school bus when the driver was forced to hit the brakes to avoid running into a vehicle that had cut him off.

Ureña-Dones's face was bloodied by the incident, and the windshield cracked from the force of the impact.

“I thought of quick things to do to help Isabel,” Bernstein said. “I looked around at my resources and saw snow, and asked the bus driver if we could use some.”

Mejia and Riviera ran off the bus and packed snowballs to press on Ureña-Dones' face to prevent swelling. The three girls also made sure all the other students on the bus were accounted for, and calmed them down.

“I feel like a superhero,” Mejia said.

“It was really nice to get their help, because it helped a lot,” Ureña-Dones said. “Logan's quick thinking and the action that Lauren and Raquel took made me feel better where it hurt physically, but also emotionally.”

The Hero in the Making award has been presented twice before in the Community Hero Awards history.

The awards “encourage younger people to keep doing positive deeds in the community,” said Selina Tolentino, marketing director for Ballston Common Mall, which is a sponsor of the Community Hero Awards. “It's the type of positive reinforcement we should all give to young people.”

Bernstein, Mejia and Riviera said they are very excited to receive the community hero award, but being able to ease their friend's pain was satisfying enough.

“I never thought we'd get an award,” Riviera said.

“It feels great because we were just helping a friend, but we get an award for it,” Bernstein said.

The awards ceremony will be held on May 12 at 11:30 a.m. at Ballston Common Mall. The community is invited.

Logan Bernstein, Isabel Urena-Dones, Lauren Riviera and Raquel Mejia are students at Key Elementary School. When Urena-Dones was injured in a bus incident, Bernstein, Riviera and Mejia came to her assistance.
(Photo by Kristen Armstrong)

Return to index of articles