Sahuaro to the Rescue

Sahuaro to the Rescue

Carla Hernandez, Business Manager

Emergency situations happen when we least expect it. During Rodeo Break, most of us were relaxing at home and probably watching Netflix all day in our beds. Rodeo break for juniors Gaby Rodriguez, Toni Escarpeta, Ryan DePugh, and Ariana Chapman, however, was very different because they had to deal with a situation that many of us would not know how to handle.

It all started when Greg Smallwood and his brother Blake came to visit their dad in Tucson, who is an avid hiker and is 79 years old. Greg and Blake decided to go hike Seven Falls with their father. The best part of the 8-mile roundtrip hike is the view of several waterfalls once you reach the top. The area around the waterfalls can get very slippery, and because of this, Greg’s father slipped, falling and cutting open his head. Greg and Blake hadn’t realized what happened to their father because he was out of their view. Thankfully, Gaby, Tony, Ryan, and Ariana were there to help.

Gaby was prepared with a first aid kid and knew exactly what to do. “I’m a life guard. I started my training 2 years ago. This was the first head gash I had ever had to deal with, but the adrenaline I had helped me remember what to do. I never thought I would actually experience a situation like this.”

Gaby took charge of the situation and quickly put a towel on his head, applying pressure to the wound to stop the bleeding. Ryan, who is also a life guard, helped hold down the towel and clean up the materials they used. After the bleeding was under control and the wound was cleaned, they put a bandage on it and Greg and Blake’s dad was ready to continue their hike.

Ariana says, “We were really hoping he was okay the whole way back to the car. Eventually, we caught up to him and saw that he was fine.”

Gaby says that her friends make fun of her for always carrying around a first aid kit. However, after her day at Seven Falls, she was thankful she had it with her.

Greg Smallwood was very thankful for the help he received from Sahuaro’s students, so he personally contacted Sahuaro to inform the school of his experience at Seven Falls. Greg says, “By the time we arrived, the kids had everything under control – you (Sahuaro) can be very proud of the way they spent their day off.” On Greg’s blog, he wrote, “I am convinced that this group of young people would have walked with us every step of the way – they offered us water, more bandages, snacks, and everything else they could think of.  And more than once they begged us to take Dad to the emergency room when we got back.”

Because of Gaby, Toni, Ryan, and Ariana, the Smallwoods were able to safely get back to their car and take their dad to the emergency room. Greg’s dad ended up with 20 staples in his scalp, but he didn’t let that stop him from going on a 9 hour hike the next day.

It was kind of Mr. Smallwood to contact the school and send the photos he took so The Paper Cut could investigate and spread the word – not only is Sahuaro a Be Kind campus, but we continue to be kind no matter where we go.