Young boy honored after 911 call

Taylor Higgins, 5, is honored Friday as the county’s Kid Hero Award winner for dialing 911 and offering pizza to paramedics last year when his mother got hurt. He was 4 at the time.

It’s quite common for grown men and women who dial 911 to get frustrated, upset or downright angry at the number of questions that dispatchers ask them.

But Mount Pleasant resident Taylor Higgins happily answered each one when he called in July — and even offered the first-responders some pizza.

And he was 4.

On Friday, the Charleston County Consolidated 911 Center gave Taylor, now 5, its annual Kid Hero Award for his calm under fire. He accepted it during a ceremony at North Charleston City Hall. He struck a Superman pose.

Ultimately, Taylor wants to be a police officer some day. And the 911 call played during the presentation showed the boy’s mettle — a quality that will come in handy in that line of work.

The date was July 21. The place, his house. And the predicament: Taylor’s mother had fallen and hit her head on a cabinet. Nobody else was home.

“I’m Taylor,” he said during the call. “My mom’s bleeding. ... She needs a hospital.”

He was pretty concerned, but he kept his cool.

“He was able to provide ... all of the information and answer all the questions,” said Allyson Burrell, the 911 Center’s deputy director. “Taylor was just so worried, not only about his mother, but about the first-responders.”

He told his mom that an ambulance was on the way, so it was OK for him to unlock the door for the paramedics.

“I left the pizza for the ambulance,” Taylor told the dispatcher. “If they don’t want it, I’ll give it to the doctor.”

Jim Lake, director of the 911 Center, on Friday draped a medal around Taylor’s neck and handed the kid a framed award. He gave a thumbs-up.

Overhearing Taylor’s career aspirations, law enforcement and fire chiefs from Mount Pleas- ant, Charleston and Charleston County took over the microphone to offer opposing recruitment pitches. Charleston Police Chief Greg Mullen tried to rise above the fray.

“This is all about cooperation and relationships,” Mullen said. “We shouldn’t be competing against one another.”

Besides, Taylor will have a few years to decide.

Reach Andrew Knapp at 843-937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.