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Hero Custodian Honored by Wilmington Selectmen

Wilmington selectmen honored Public Buildings Department employee Mike Scanlon on Monday for saving the life of a 9-year-old student at North Intermediate School.

Public Buildings Department employee Mike Scanlon was honored at Monday's selectmen meeting for saving the life of North Intermediate student Daevin Harless. Credit: Chris Gambon.
Public Buildings Department employee Mike Scanlon was honored at Monday's selectmen meeting for saving the life of North Intermediate student Daevin Harless. Credit: Chris Gambon.

When Public Buildings Department employee Mike Scanlon saw a North Intermediate School student in distress, choking during a lunch period earlier this month, he sprang into action to save the boy's life.

Scanlon saw a teacher run from the cafeteria to get the school nurse, and then observed 9-year-old Daevin Harless in distress, his face pale. 

At Monday's Board of Selectmen meeting, Scanlon was honored by the board with Harless by his side. 

Wilmington Selectmen Chairman Michael McCoy thanked Scanlon for his heroic efforts, commending his quick thinking. 

"The town wants to recognize what you did," McCoy said. "You're a hero, and I know you want to downplay what you did, but you're a hero and you saved this young boy's life." 

Scanlon said he was thankful that the situation had a happy ending and that Harless had recovered from the incident. 

"I'm just glad it worked out the way it did and he's still around," Scanlon said. "I see him every day and I can say hi to him. It could have turned out way worse than it did. It could have been a tragedy."

Harless' mother and grandmother were in attendance on Monday, and both thanked Scanlon for his life-saving actions. 

Town Manager Jeff Hull said Scanlon's actions have inspired the town to begin exploring the possibility of offering classes on the heimlich maneuver and basic first aid to town and school employees. 

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