On September 15, 2013 Upton Fire Chief Aaron Goodale and Deputy State Fire Marshall Peter J. Ostroskey recognized Alexis Sherwin as a “S.A.F.E. Young Hero” at the Upton Selectmen meeting. During the presentation Chief Goodale said, “Tonight we have a wonderful opportunity to recognize a true hero in our community.”
On May 21, 2013 the Upton Fire Department arrived at Alexis’ home to find it showing heavy fire and fully charged with smoke. On route to the fire, Chief Goodale had been alerted the Sherwin family had gotten out of the home safely. It wasn’t until after the fire was out that the story of how everyone evacuated was told; “the reason why we are here tonight,” said Chief Goodale.
When the fire alarm went off at 3:30 in the morning Alexis grabbed her cell phone and her younger sister. She met her mother at the top of the stairs. Alexis then took her sister and exited the house and went directly to the family meeting spot. Her mom wanted to go back in and save the cats, but Alexis told her mom not to do it. Alexis made the emergency call to 911 for help.
Chief Goodale said “In a world where we hear of everything kids do wrong, here is a case where we can honor a member of our community for doing exactly what she is supposed to.”
The Upton Fire Department provides the youth and seniors of Upton fire safety training through a program called S.A.F.E., which is funded through a state grant. Alexis’ mom praises the training Alexis received through this program and believes the training is the reason why Alexis reacted quickly and bravely. Deputy State Fire Ostroskey also praised the Community, the Upton Fire Department, and specifically Lieutenant Bonnie Lopez who is the facilitator of the program. “This is a pay off, you can enjoy the most heralded successes…..the hard work provided the foundation that was built upon and Alexis reacted with,” said Ostroskey.
Deputy State Fire Marshall Peter J. Ostroskey presented the award to Alexis. The inscription on the award reads: “In recognition of your ability to respond quickly and bravely in an emergency situation, carrying your younger sister out of the house and directly to your family’s meeting place. The outstanding bravery and quick thinking you exhibited has earned you the everlasting gratitude of the citizenry of Massachusetts.”
Chief Goodale also presented Alexis with an award which read “The Upton Fire Department EMS Unit honors Alelxis Sherwin for taking immediate S.A.F.E. action on the morning of May 21, 2013 and contributed in saving her life and the life of her family members.”
Alexis is now 1 of 285 youth in Massachusetts to received the “S.A.F.E. Young Hero Award.” The S.A.F.E. program has been in taught in Upton for 13 years.
Alexis is an Upton teen who attends Blackstone Valley Technical High School.
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