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Local boy is recognized for his courage, bravery and heroic actions that helped save his daddy's life

HOLLY SCHOLZ/MADRAS PIONEER 
 - Wyatt Hewson's face lights up as EMT Chelsie Beaver gives him a gift basket as part of the Life Saving Award. Wyatt helped keep his father, Jesse Hewson, awake and hydrated after Jesse was injured in an ATV accident last month.

Six-year-old Wyatt Hewson did everything he was supposed to do after a fishing trip with his daddy turned into a rescue mission.

And little Wyatt's bravery did not go unnoticed.

The Jefferson County Emergency Medical Services District and Volunteer Association presented Wyatt with the Life Saving Award in sincere appreciation for showing courage and bravery in an emergency situation. His heroic actions saved a life – his daddy's life.

Jesse and Wyatt Hewson, of Madras, had headed out on a father-son fishing trip on Wednesday, July 14 west of Elk Drive near Lake Simtustus. They took the side-by-side ATV, and all was well until they were headed home, and the ATV got jammed in between two rocks on the narrow trail.

HOLLY SCHOLZ/MADRAS PIONEER 
 - Jefferson County Emergency Medical Services Chief Michael Lepin presented 6-year-old Wyatt Hewson with a JCEMS coin and said Wyatt was now part of their crew.Jesse told Wyatt to get out and go up the hill a little bit. Using the winch, Jesse tried to work the ATV free, but the winch broke. The ATV tumbled down an embankment, taking Jesse with it and trapping his leg under the frame.

Jesse knew his right leg was broken.

"When I dug it out from the frame, things didn't move together," Jesse said.

He needed help – fast.

But cell phone service was spotty. How would emergency medical crews ever find him on this steep and rocky trail?

His only hope was Wyatt.

"I kept telling him I need water," Jesse recalled. "He said, 'I'm going to go find your canteen.'" Wyatt searched the whole hillside and brought the canteen back to his dad. "I need water to keep Daddy awake, Buddy," Jesse kept telling his son.

Jesse had the wherewithal to try to call his friend Travis Lingscheit, who knew their fishing spot and the trail. Jesse instructed Wyatt to use Daddy's cell phone and search for a signal. Wyatt climbed around until there was enough signal to make a call out.

"So, I called Travis, and I said, 'Look, Dude, I went down to our fishing spot,' and he knows what that means, and I said, 'I'm right on the corner after the washout.'"

Travis called emergency crews, who said they'd send for Life Flight. Travis and his wife, Jessi, and Jesse's wife, Bri, got in their Jeep and headed to Jesse and Wyatt.

Meanwhile, Jesse kept reminding Wyatt to keep him awake. "Don't let me go to sleep, Buddy. I think I hit my head, but if Daddy goes to sleep, try and wake me up."

So, Wyatt busied himself with collecting all of their belongings that had fallen out of the ATV and showing the things to his dad. Wyatt chatted, patted his dad's head, and made sure he had water. The two were there for about an hour before Travis, Jessi and Bri arrived with water and bandages.

Travis then took his Jeep back up to the road and led Jefferson County Fire District No. 1 and Jefferson County Emergency Medical Services crews to the wreckage.

"Bri was the one who climbed inside the side-by-side and helped the emergency crew kick out the window to extract me," Jesse said.

The rescuers strapped Jesse to a gurney and carried him out on foot for nearly a mile over the steep terrain to a waiting helicopter. He was flown to St. Charles in Bend, where he was treated for two broken bones and six fractures in his right leg and a fractured hip.

On Monday, Aug. 2, Jesse patted his son's head as they recounted the crash with EMS crewmembers.

They gave Wyatt a framed Life Saving Award certificate. His face lit up when EMT Chelsie Beaver handed him a gift basket filled with ambulance, cop car, helicopter and fire truck toys. He also got a water bottle, snacks and Life Savers.

JCEMS Chief Michael Lepin gave Wyatt an EMS coin.

"This represents our agency, our crew here," Lepin said. "This one is yours. It makes you part of our crew."

"He was definitely the trooper," Jesse said. "That's my helper. He did everything that he was supposed to."


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