Shelby Co. dispatcher credited with helping mother save daughter


by Brooke Hasch

Posted on February 18, 2014 at 7:25 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 19 at 10:09 AM

SHELBY COUNTY, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A Shelby County dispatcher is being credited with helping a mother save the life of her young daughter after the girl nearly drowned Friday morning, Feb. 14.

DISPATCHER: "Shelby County 911."

JENNIFER ARMOUR: "I need someone. My baby is drowning!"

A frantic Jennifer Armour pleaded with a 911 dispatcher for help. Her 17-month-old daughter, Hannah, had taken in too much water while in the shower.

ARMOUR: "Her eyes are rolling back in her head. Please help!"

"All I heard was screaming," Sheri Abshire said.

Abshire was the Shelby County dispatcher on the other end of the call.

"You're as nervous as the mother, but you have to bring yourself down to a calm level so you can calm the mother, to get her to do the things she needs to do to help the baby," Abshire said.

A second dispatcher immediately notified emergency responders while Abshire began giving the mother life-saving instructions.

DISPATCHER: "I need for you to open her mouth and clear her airway."

ARMOUR: "Okay."

With a calm voice, Abshire began walking Armour through the motions as she initiated CPR.

DISPATCHER: "Is she breathing?

ARMOUR: "Yes, she is."

"Then, the baby started crying, which is the best sound in the world," Abshire said. "Not all outcomes are like this one. There are days you go home and you beat yourself up. You feel like you could've done more. And then, there's days like that day, Friday, and you go home, just so happy that you do what you do."

Armour says Hannah made a full recovery that night. She says she's always given her children showers, instead of baths, for fear one of them might fall below standing water. How Hannah managed to take in so much water, she still doesn't know.

Hannah's success story comes days after Kentucky lawmakers created legislation (HB 391) that would provide more revenue to local 911 centers.