Orange County Girl Scout awarded Medal of Honor for saving drowning teen in pool

Ivy Nguyen says she relied on her Girl Scout first aid training to save Brandon Vu's life.

Amanda Palacios Image
Monday, April 29, 2024
Orange County Girl Scout honored for saving drowning teen in pool
15-year-old Girl Scout Ivy Nguyen earned a Medal of Honor and recognition from the city of Santa Ana after saving a teen boy from drowning in a pool.

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- At just 15 years old, Ivy Nguyen was honored as a hero after saving a teenage boy from drowning in a pool.

"I'm very happy. I didn't expect this venue of people to be here and I'm so grateful for everything," Nguyen said.

The Orange County Girl Scout was presented with a Medal of Honor for her quick thinking and life-saving skills last June.

"Brandon wanted to see if he could like, hold his breath across and go across the pool. And then I kind of looked underwater. And I was like he's not okay, he looks like unconscious. I lifted up his arm and the first thing I saw was that his lips were purple," Nguyen said.

Nguyen said she relied on her Girl Scout first aid training and started performing CPR until the ambulance arrived.

"It was very relieving when he gasped actually. And we actually laid him back on his side because I didn't want like any of that pool of water to get into his lungs," Nguyen said.

"I think it's something everyone should learn eventually. Even if they do learn it, it's another thing to do it in real life. You know, there's not a lot of people out there that wouldn't have the courage to do what she did for me," said drowning victim Brandon Vu.

For her outstanding act of heroism, Nguyen was also presented with a letter of recognition from the city of Santa Ana. Her courage and readiness saved Vu's life.

"Having the training and the confidence, knowing exactly what skills needed to be done. She did what she was trained to do," said Ted Sachio Oyam, volunteer master trainer for Girl Scouts.

"That kind of showed me like another side of me. I can actually do what's right and stand up and do the right things, even when I'm under pressure," Nguyen said.

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