3-year-old honored for actions helping mom

Boy called mom's friend when his mother was knocked unconscious

Joseph Hutcheson is honored for calling for help when his mom was knocked unconscious.
Joseph Hutcheson is honored for calling for help when his mom was knocked unconscious.

FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla. – Last September, Joseph Hutcheson was at home with his mom on Hazelnut Street in Daytona North when a terrible accident occurred.

His mom, Cheyenne Donaldson, fell from near the top of a 6-foot ladder as she was trying to change a light bulb. As she was falling, Donaldson hit her head against a table and then fell onto the hard tile floor. She was knocked unconscious.

Joseph, then 2 years old, remembered the lessons his mom had taught him. He dialed the number of his mother's best friend, Lisa Bittle, and told her that his mom fell down and was not getting up.

Donaldson, who has health concerns, had taught her young son how to dial 911 and how to dial her friend.

Bittle responded quickly to the home and called rescuers, who transported Joseph's mom to a hospital.

Flagler County Deputy Steve Williams, who was among the emergency personnel who responded to the scene, was impressed by the youngster's actions.

"I couldn't believe that this young boy was calm enough to make that call," he said.

Tuesday morning, Joseph was recognized by Flagler County Sheriff Donald Fleming for his quick actions and his calm approach to an emergency involving his mom. Donaldson escorted her son, and Joseph's brother, 5-year-old Christopher Kelly, attended, too.

"Joseph, I want to tell you what a brave thing that you did. You were looking out for your mom," Fleming said.

The sheriff pointed out that this was not the first time Joseph had called for help on behalf of his mom.

"He has really been doing a great job being his mom's guardian angel," Fleming said.

After being awarded a plaque recognizing his actions, the brothers were asked what they wanted to be when they grow up.

"I want to be a game warden," Christopher said.

"I want to be a cop," Joseph said.

The sheriff wished them both well on achieving their goals.

"We can always use more people to serve this community," he said.