WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIVB)– Today letter carriers from across the nation are being honored for their heroic actions.
A local mail carrier is being recognized after helping to save a little boy named Gavin who was badly injured after a lawnmower accident in Lewiston.
“The moment that it happened all I could think about was doing everything I can so this little boy doesn’t die.”
Theresa Jo Belkota says she doesn’t consider herself a hero, despite taking action that saved her young neighbor’s life after a lawnmower accident last year.
“I’m just a Letter Carrier who lives in a small town in New York State,” Belkota said.
On Wednesday, Belkota was among the recipients honored by the National Association of Letter Carriers. Overcome with emotion she received the award for the Eastern Regional Hero of the year.
“I’m very humbled. I credit the good Lord for divine intervention for putting me in the right place at the right time.”
Belkota reflected on that dark day last June when screams from the young boy caught her attention.
“I was not going to let him die on my dime, it was not going to happen,” Belkota said.
When she found him in his backyard she says she used a technique she learned from watching television to stop the bleeding from the young boy’s leg.
“I knew it was vital that I had to stop as much bleeding as possible he had already been turning white from the loss of blood from the time I got in the backyard – and we live right next door.”
Belkota says the most important thing she hopes people take away from her story is to jump in and help somebody, don’t ever be afraid.
She says she knows firsthand…it can help save a life.