A 15-year-old boy who carried a fellow student to the nurse’s office — seeking help for her while she was in the midst of an asthma attack — has been given a two-day suspension for leaving class without permission.
“I was like what? I’m suspended for this? Like, I was trying to help her,” Anthony Ruelas, an eighth-grade student at the Gateway Middle School in Killeen, Tex., told KCEN-TV. Anthony’s mother, Mandy Cortes (pictured above with him), added, “He may not follow instructions all the time, but he does have a great heart.”
Anthony reportedly made the decision to leave his classroom on Tuesday while his friend was having an asthma attack, gagging and wheezing while nobody helped. According to a form about the incident filled out by the teacher, as shared on the local TV station, “During 5th period another student complained that she couldn’t breathe and was having an asthma attack. As I waited for a response from the nurse the student fell out of her chair to the floor. Anthony proceeded to go over and pick her up, saying ‘f*** that, we ain’t got time to wait for no email from the nurse.’ He walks out of class and carries the other student to the nurse.”
“I broke rules,” Anthony said. “But she needed help. Like, she needed help.”
His mom added, “I don’t … think he should have used that language. But as far as getting suspended for walking out of class, he could have saved her life.” The asthmatic student texted Anthony to thank him on Wednesday, and letting him know she was OK.
While the Killeen Independent School District would not comment specifically on the incident in an effort to protect “students’ rights to confidentiality,” superintendent John Craft said, in a statement to Yahoo Parenting, “The Killeen ISD maintains the safety of our students, staff and campuses as a priority and applauds the efforts of students who act in good faith to assist others in times of need.”
Cortes has seen no evidence of such praise — only punishment — but, she said, “He is a hero to me.”
(Top photo: KCEN-TV)