HERO CENTRAL: Girl dials 911 with deactivated phone

WATKINSVILLE, Ga. -- A 10-year-old from Oconee County was home alone last week when her house was burglarized. She found a way to call 911 that many adults may not know.

"I don't want to be home alone again," said elementary school student Nora, "because that was when it happened."

Nora was home sick from school when the robbery occurred, at 3 p.m.

She went to watch TV, said mother Marianne Shockley, "turned around and there was no TV. The back door was wide open."

Nora said she felt scared, but, "I had to tell myself to keep your head on straight, find a phone, and call for help."

One problem: Nora could not find her phone.

But she remembered a trick she had learned a few weeks earlier.

Said the ten-year-old, "Something in my mind just clicked and said you could use an old phone to dial 911."

An old phone, even with no activated plan, can still dial 911 as long as it has power.

Corporal Kandy Marchman taught that tool to Nora and her classmates at Oconee Elementary, as part of the sheriff's C.H.A.M.P.S. program.

Marchman wound up fielding Nora's 911 call.

"She said, 'I misplaced my old phone, but my Champs teacher taught me I could dial 911,'" Marchman recalls. "I asked her, 'Was your Champs teacher Miss Kandy?' And when she said yes, I said, 'You're talking to Miss Kandy' ... and that calmed her down."

Nearly a week later, Nora is an example of a levelheaded child doing the right thing -- a thing many adults may not realize.

"I'm very proud of her," says her mother. "She's my hero. I keep telling her that."

For more stories by Matt Pearl, you can follow him on Facebook, Twitter, or at his Telling The Story blog.


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