911 dispatcher helps woman save drowning granddaughter

LEWISVILLE — Angela Sherrod hears people on their worst day as a dispatcher for Lewisville. About two weeks ago she heard it in a grandmother’s cry for help.

“There was something wrong. You could hear it in her voice, something was wrong,” Sherrod said.

Something was terribly wrong. This caller from Lewisville found her 18-month-old granddaughter in the pool.

“I need you to work with me, okay?” said Sherrod on the 911 call.

Twenty years of dispatch experience has taught her that calm always prevails.

“That is the No. 1 rule; to remain calm, because if I am not calm then what good am I to you?” said Sherrod.

Especially when a frantic grandmother has an unconscious – not breathing – granddaughter. But Angela came trained for these moments. With the help of prompts, Angela directs the caller to turn the child on her side and clear out any vomit and water.

“You’re doing good and just keep going, okay?” Sherrod is overheard on the 911 call. But seeing an unresponsive child is not easy.

“I can’t do all that,” the caller says. “Yes you can….yes you can,” Sherrod quickly says.

Empowering someone who is going through so much trauma. Angela, in the middle of this, thinks about the young man whose picture is posted on her wall.

“I have a two-year-old grandson myself, so it hits home,” said Sherrod.

“I’m gonna tell you how to give mouth-to-mouth,” Sherrod directed the caller.

It would take two puffs of air. And then the sound Angela was hoping for.

“Is that her crying?” asked Sherrod.

“That was a sigh of relief for me,” Sherrod said later.

It’s relief on both sides because crying meant the child was getting air.

“If it wasn’t for what she did we wouldn’t have the same outcome,” Sherrod said.

The family did not want to talk but tell us the child is now fine. Angela, who hears people on their worst day, heard something different this time. And she says it felt good because the next call might not.

“It’s another day…another day,” she said.