VANDALIA, Ohio (WDTN) – It’s Emma Malone Day in the City of Vandalia.
Emma is a sophomore at Chaminade Julienne High School and after her heroic actions in January, she has a day all her own.
Back in January Emma, her mom and younger brother were driving on the freeway through Vandalia. It was during that drive that Emma’s mother became unconscious while driving 70 mph.
15-year-old Emma hadn’t driven a car yet, but was able to pull the car over from the passenger seat and save her family.
“My instincts just kinda kicked in. I turned on all the lights in the car. I tried to push her foot on to the brake. It wasn’t really working, so I just grabbed the wheel and pulled over to the shoulder as much as I could,” said Malone.
Quick thinking and bravery saved Emma, her family and other drivers that night.
While Emma focused on her mom in those tense moments, she also had her younger brother, Tommy in the back seat.
“I turned around and said, “Tommy, mommy is not feeling well. Can you please put her seat back so she can lay down,” said Malone.
In tears, Tommy recalls the incident.
“It was scary cause I didn’t know what’s going to happen to my mom.”
That emotional day has stuck with Emma and she says its changed her and Tommy’s life.
“It makes you think, that everyday you have to live it as if it’s your last,” said Malone.
Emma’s mom, a teacher, spent three days in the hospital for heat exhaustion and is back at work today.
Emma’s grandfather, Thomas Schafer says he didn’t realize the scope of his granddaughters accomplishment until he learn she would have a whole day dedicated to her.
“I’m proud of Emma and that my daughter and grandson are here today. I’m very happy that no one else on the highway was involved. Someone innocent could have been involved in a very serious accident.”