Teacher Giving Virtual Lesson Saves The Life Of Student's Grandmother

October 20, 2020

A first grade teacher in Michigan is being recognized for her efforts that helped save the life of one of her students' grandmothers.

julia koch teacher
Julia Koch / CNN

Julia Koch was teaching her class at Edgewood Elementary School when she received a call from a grandparent who was having technical problems with her granddaughter's computer.

But Koch noticed a more serious problem — the slurring in the woman's speech.

"It was clear there was something very wrong. Her words were so jumbled, and I couldn't understand what she was trying to say," Koch told CNN. "She didn't sound like herself."

Koch quickly alerted the school principal, Charlie Lovelady, who called 911. Phillips was having a stroke — and while she remains hospitalized, she is expected to survive.

"I knew the symptoms of a stroke because I lost my father from a stroke so I told her hold on and immediately got her help," Koch said.

While she is still at the hospital, Phillips said she is slowly recovering.

"Thank you for saving my life," Phillips said. "If it weren't for them getting me the help I needed, I would've just not been here."

"I am immensely proud of both Ms. Koch and Mr. Lovelady, their quick actions and the energy they have poured into relationships with students and families during this new way of education are making a significant positive difference in the lives of our students and their families," Muskegon Heights Public School Academy System Superintendent Rané Garcia said in a statement.

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