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Heroic youngsters, 9 and 6, presented life-saving awards


Brothers Heath (L) and J. W. Hollas flank grand-aunt Della Mekush, whose life they were instrumental in saving Aug. 19, as the boys receive awards from Milam County Sheriff David Greene. 
Photo courtesy Milam County Sheriff’s Department Brothers Heath (L) and J. W. Hollas flank grand-aunt Della Mekush, whose life they were instrumental in saving Aug. 19, as the boys receive awards from Milam County Sheriff David Greene. Photo courtesy Milam County Sheriff’s Department Sometimes heroes come in small packages and Cameronarea resident Della Mekush is grateful that they do.

Brothers Heath Hollas, 9, and J. W. Hollas, 6, were recognized with Preservation of Life Awards by Sheriff David Greene at Monday’s Milam County Commissioner Court meeting.

On Aug. 19 the two boys, sons of Gery and Theresa Mekush Hollas of Cameron, were credited with saving Della Mekush’s life by guiding rescuers to the remote spot where she suffered critical injuries when thrown from a horse.

Mek ush, who is t he boys’ grand-aunt, was giving them a riding lesson when her horse spooked and threw her off, causing extensive head injuries.

COOL HEADS—According to family friend Carolyn Hux, Heath knew Mekush carried a cell phone but realized if he dismounted he would be unable to get back on his horse to guide rescuers.

So the youngsters rode back to the Mekush home, more than a mile, called 911 and their mother.

Rescuers and family members responded to the house. Heath led his mother to the site where Mrs. Mekush lay bleeding with extensive head and facial trauma, obvious life-threatening injuries.

It was a crucial series of decisions. The terrain of the area made it impossible for vehicles to reach the accident site.

“I was game warden for 30 years and I was never back in there,” Greene told commissioners.

Medical personnel later told the family if there had been any further delay in locating Mrs. Mekush she probably would have died without making it to a hospital.

A neighbor, Carolyn Salicos, provided an ATV which enabled emergency workers to move their equipment into the area and remove Mrs. Mekush.

Mrs. Mekush, who was at Monday’s commissioners meeting, is still undergoing treatments on her right eye.

STATEMENT—Greene read a statement and presented both youngsters with plaques.

“We are truly thankful to you, Heath and J.W.,” he said. “Your actions that morning were brave and honorable.”

“I hope that you will hold our head high and be proud to know that you saved the life of a fellow person and family member,” Greene said.

“You are both an honor to your community and to Mrs. Mekush,” he concluded.


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