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By Steve Bradley
Eileen Cook, a cleaner on the custodial staff at LaFayette Intermediate School, was recognized as an Unsung Hero by the Waterloo Central School District at the Oct. 23 Board of Education meeting.
Cook was cited for her heroic actions on Aug. 22 that helped saved the life of head custodian Diane Mitchell. She was nominated by Mitchell, Lexie Brown and LaFayette Principal Molly Lahr.
Their nomination read: “On Aug. 22, 2023, Eileen Cook was working with head custodian Diane Mitchell at LaFayette Intermediate. Per usual, both were working hard to prepare our school for the first day. While working, Eileen noticed alarming differences in Diane and was quick to respond. She called 911 immediately. Eileen recognizing that something was not right and her quick response saved Diane’s life. If it was not for her, it is possible that Diane would not still be with us today.”
“Diane was having an ischemic stroke. An ischemic stroke limits blood supply to the brain, preventing it from receiving the proper oxygen and nutrients. When a person has this type of stroke, getting help as soon as possible is imperative as brain cells begin to die within minutes, causing permanent brain damage that can lead to death. Because if Eileen, Diane was able to get the help she needed in time to save her life.
“Although Diane face a challenging road ahead with new obstacles and many changes to her daily life, she is so thankful that Eileen was there that Tuesday morning, as are all of the staff at LaFayette. After making sure Diane was in good hands, Eileen then took on finishing the needed work in the building. We would like Eileen to be recognized for her life-saving efforts and commitment to her job. She is truly a hero!”
An unsung hero is a Waterloo Central School District staff member who goes above and beyond when serving students, faculty and staff on our campus, demonstrates a positive attitude toward others, and shows outstanding work performance.