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Stroke victim saved by East Bay college student

March 23, 2010 11:47:19 PM PDT
A wrong number proved to be the right call for an elderly woman who had suffered a stroke at her home in Richmond.

The college student accidentally reached is now being hailed as hero. The young woman's quick thinking saved a life hundreds of miles away.

Annie Turner suffered a stroke. It has left her partially paralyzed and her speech impaired.

She fell in her bedroom last month, grabbed the phone and began to dial. She thought she was calling a friend, but instead her call reached 18-year-old Taylor Booker, who was in a dorm at U.C. Riverside hundreds of miles away.

"At the time I thought, 'Oh, this is was a prank call. It's somebody playing a joke, I'm just going to hang up,'" said Booker. "It is a Friday night. A lot of people play around, especially in college. I just remember the tone of her voice when she said 'help.'"

The 70-year-old former nurse and artist lives alone in Richmond. That misdialed call was the best mistake of her life. She reached a biochemistry major.

When asked if Booker knew Turner was having a stroke, Booker said, "I did, just by the tone of her voice because I've taken classes."

On Tuesday night, Booker received a commendation from the city of Hercules, her hometown. They honored her for having compassion and presence of mind.

The teenager had a friend call 911, while she gathered the basics from Turner like her name, a partial address, and she stayed on the line until paramedics arrived.

"I had her on speaker and I had the police department on the other line and they told me to keep her calm," said Booker.

Turner sent a card to the girl who may have saved her life, expressing some of the words she is not yet able to say.

Taylor may also receive a commendation from the city of Richmond and even the state may honor her.


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