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Home » Life » Whitesville resident to receive Girl Scouts of the USA’s National Medal of Honor for lifesaving act

Whitesville resident to receive Girl Scouts of the USA’s National Medal of Honor for lifesaving act

  • / Updated:
  • Concetta Durso 

Charlotte Bissett, 7, of Whitesville, N.Y., a Brownie-level Girl Scout in the NYPENN Pathways (GSNYPENN) Council and 3rd grader in Whitesville Central School District, will be presented with Girl Scouts of the USA’s National Medal of Honor for valiant efforts tomorrow afternoon (September 27).

Charlotte is the daughter of Kayla and Tom Bissett of Whitesville. She is a member of Girl Scout Troop 60222 within Service Unit 453 Rambling Rivers.

The Medal of Honor is one of the highest national honors that Girl Scouts bestows. It is given to a girl who displays a heroic act beyond her degree of maturity and training for saving a life or attempting to save a life without risk to the Girl Scout’s own. 

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On December 13, 2021, Charlotte showed her commitment to being resourceful, skilled, and competent in saving a life when her quick thinking saved her then two-year-old sister, Eleanor, from a potential drowning in the bathtub during a seizure. Charlotte knew to hold her sister’s head above water while the seizure was taking place and to call for help.

The Girl Scouts Medal of Honor pin will be presented to Charlotte Bissett at 3 p.m. tomorrow—Tuesday, September 27—in the little gym at Whitesville Central School, 692 Main St.

Her sister, Eleanor, will be present at the ceremony in addition to her parents. Charlotte will be pinned by Julie Dale, GSNYPENN CEO. Whitesville Superintendent Tammy Emery, Principal Renee McNeely, GSNYPENN Service Unit Manager Rashell Boyd, local troop leaders and council staff will also attend.

Media are invited to cover the presentation, enter through school’s main office. On-site GSNYPENN contact is Renee Rivera, Senior Membership Support Manager: 607.271.6458 or [email protected].

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“I’m proud of Charlotte’s courage, confidence, and character, and display of both presence of mind and Girl Scout spirit in an emergency,” says Dale. “Charlotte’s heroism and sound judgment personify all we instill in Girl Scouts and are a testament to the highest principles of our Promise and Law.”

In a letter to Charlotte, GSUSA CEO Sofia Chang wrote: “Through your willingness to take decisive action in the midst of an emergency, you have not only saved a life but also served as an example for all Girl Scouts.”

Since 1913, Girl Scouts have been honored for meritorious deeds that help save lives. Lifesaving Awards the Bronze Cross and the Medal of Honor are national honors given to a registered Girl Scout who has saved or attempted to save human life under circumstances that indicate heroism or risk to her own. The awards are reserved for Girl Scouts who have performed acts of heroism beyond the degree of maturity and training expected for their age.

Training in health and safety is part of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience. Because of the Promise and Law to which she subscribes, a Girl Scout is expected to be resourceful, skilled, and competent; to have presence of mind, and to be of service to others. Each situation has unique factors, and many things are taken into consideration in determining if an act is of unusual bravery beyond that which is expected of a Girl Scout. Completed award applications that meet all requirements are submitted from the local council to GSUSA for consideration and approval.