HAMPSTEAD, NC - Topsail High School Senior Grace Deitz, is grateful for the skills she learned in her Health Science class as it played an important role in saving the life of her chaperone on a church retreat.
Grace was traveling back from a weekend church retreat when a decision was made to pull over to take some photos in a field. While taking pictures several people were bitten by fire ants. A short time after loading back into the van it was clear the driver was experiencing some difficulties.
"Shortness of breath, wasn't able to see very well, was shaky and I realized these were the signs of anaphylactic shock." Grace said. "Thankfully someone had an EpiPen."
The driver was able to safely pull over to allow another adult to take the wheel and change course for the nearest hospital which is when Grace administered the shot. Upon arriving at the hospital the driver received additional medications helping stabilize the situation.
"I felt like I've taken these classes, I've received the training and that helped ease the anxiety in the moment." Grace said.
When she returned to school after the trip Grace sought out her Health Science teacher Barbara Gleaves to tell her what happened.
"That's why we teach Health Science. That's why I became a teacher, so I can impart that knowledge on other kids and that they can save somebody's life." Ms. Gleaves said. "Grace was the right person, at the right time, in the right place."
As a Senior at Topsail High School Grace is a semester away from graduating and has her sites set on a career in healthcare.
"The experience, although it was scary it also excited me because I was able to help somebody with the training that I had received and I want to continue helping people in my future as a nurse or nurse practitioner."