Illinois Girl Scout earns Medal of Honor for saving a man’s life

News
This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

O’FALLON, Ill. – O’Fallon third grade Girl Scout Gretel Ulmer received the Girl Scouts’ Medal of Honor for doing her part in saving her neighbor’s life last October.

“I felt happy that he got to the hospital okay, and I felt like I was actually part of a group that helped too,” Gretel said.

Gretel’s mother, Pamela, was out with her selling Girl Scout nuts and candy to raise money for her troop when she saw Henry Gaddis, a man in his 80s, lying on the ground.

“Gretel was ahead of me and actually when she was going up to the driveway and saw this gentleman laying on the drive, I thought it was a man working on his car, we had no idea this man was hurt and asking for help. We didn’t realize he was hurt until he raised his arm up and couldn’t talk, then Gretel knew we were in an emergency and the fact that she didn’t panic or cry, she just knew that he needed help,” Pamela Ulmer said.

Gaddis had an oral procedure done earlier that day, and the mixing of medications caused him to become unresponsive and collapse.

Gretel’s health and safety training she’d received from her troop kicked in immediately.

“As her troop leader, I like to think and hope that whatever I prepare and teach them that they’re taking it into thought and consideration,” Gretel’s Troop Leader Michele Pratt said.

Gretel’s mother is a former Girl Scout and is extremely proud of Gretel’s actions. She appreciates all the life skills the scouts have taught her daughter.

I think learning about the commitment to diversity and being kind to our neighbors and being of service to our neighbors came from that Brownie quest journey that our leader took us on,” Pamela Ulmer said.

The Medal of Honor is not something that Girl Scout volunteers have their scouts actively work towards.

“It’s a two-fold medal. You can have the Medal of Honor where there’s no potential harm to the Girl Scout and then there’s the Medal of Honor where there could potentially be hard to the Girl Scout and we really don’t want either one to be earned, so to speak,” Debbie McAuliffe, Girl Scout Service Unit Manager of O’Fallon, Shiloh and Fairview Heights, said.

Girl Scouts have been earning this honor since 1913.

In order to receive the Girl Scouts’ Medal of Honor, Pamela Ulmer told the council office of Gretel’s heroism, they then sent the information to the Girl Scouts of the USA who then look over the nominations and hand out the honors.

Loretta Graham the CEO of the Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois will be visiting Gretel’s house to give her the award.

“I will tell you, this is just the beginning of what this young lady is going to do in this society,” Graham said.

Gretel said she likes helping people but she also enjoys helping animals.

“I want to be a teacher, but I want to be a veterinarian,” Gretel said.

Graham said its girls like Gretel who live out the Girl Scout oath that makes the world a better place.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

About FOX 2 News

FOX 2 and KPLR 11 in St. Louis cover the news in Missouri and Illinois. There are over 68 hours of live news and local programming on-air each week. Our website and live video streams operate 24/7. Download our apps for alerts and follow us on social media for updates in your feed.

President Harry Truman said: “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That spirit is alive and well at Fox 2. Our teamwork is on display each and every day.

Our news slogan is: “Coverage You Can Count On.” We quite frankly are too busy to worry about who gets the credit. Our main concern is serving the viewer.

We go where the stories take us. Whether it be Washington, D.C when a Belleville man opened fire during a congressional baseball game practice or to Puerto Rico where local Ameren crews restored power after more than 5 months in the dark.

Coverage You Can Count On means “Waking up your Day” with our top-rated morning show. From 4:00 am-10:00 am we are leading the way with breaking news. But our early morning crew also knows how to have some fun! Our strong commitment to the communities we serve is highlighted with our Friday neighborhood shows.

Our investigative unit consists of three reporters. Elliott Davis focuses on government waste, Chris Hayes is our investigative reporter, and Mike Colombo is our consumer reporter. They work in unison with the news department by sharing resources and ideas.

We continue to cover breaking news aggressively and relied on our seasoned journalists to make a difference with the stories we covered. The shooting of Arnold Police Officer Ryan O’Connor is just one example of that. Jasmine Huda was the only reporter who had exclusive access to the O’Connor family during his amazing rehabilitation in Colorado.

Last, but certainly not least, FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are committed to covering local politics. We host debates among candidates and have the most extensive presidential election coverage. Our commitment to politics isn’t just during an election year. We produce two political shows that air every weekend.

Popular

Latest News

More News