By Leanne Clarke AN 11-year-old girl has been hailed a heroine after leaping into action to help a woman who fell ill in Morley town centre.
Bethanie-Jade Hellewell of Hepworth Avenue, Churwell, was on her way to Morley High School when she spotted the woman having what appeared to be some kind of seizure outside Morley Town Hall.
Bethanie went straight over and realised she was having a hypoglycaemic attack, a condition that affects those with diabetes when the level of glucose in their blood falls too low.
When a 'hypo' happens the person often experiences 'warning signs', which occur as the body tries to raise the blood glucose level. These signs often include shaking, sweating, going pale, heart pounding, confusion and irritability. If some form of sugar isn't taken quickly the attack could lead to a coma and even become life-threatening.
Bethanie's mum, Nicola Hirst, said her daughter realised the woman was diabetic and needed sugar so she asked someone to go get help while she went to get her some chocolate.
"She then called an ambulance and explained to them the lady's symptoms and the problems she was having," Nicola said.
"She has only just started high school and like everyone starting a new school she was worried about such things as fitting in. It's a worrying time.
"But when she got to school that morning she didn't really go into detail as to why she was late. It wasn't until other pupils said something the teacher realised what she did.
"I didn't even know she would know what to do in that situation. Her uncle is diabetic but for her to help like that and know what she was doing is fantastic.
"I am so over the moon! I can't believe she did it! It sends the message that there are some good kids out there!"
The woman, presumably recognising Bethanie's uniform, later contacted the school to pass on her thanks to her young heroine but did not leave any details.
Dave Bardsley, assistant head at Morley High School, also praised Bethanie and gave her kind act a mention in the school's assembly.
"The week before I spoke in assembly about citizenship and what makes a good citizen, so it was really nice a week later to give this example," he said.
"Bethanie didn't get any help. She just took on the responsibility herself, called for an ambulance and waited with the lady until it arrived. It really is fantastic what she did."
Are you the woman Bethanie helped or do you know who she is? Get in touch with our newsdesk on 0113 252 3456 or email firstname.lastname@example.org