Salisbury already knows Abby Bennett is a special kid, but after the Boston Celtics honored the teenager on Wednesday night at their Heroes Among Us ceremony, thousands more became aware of it.
In September, while having lunch in the Triton Middle School cafeteria, Abby’s quick thinking rescued her friend, Kendall Mitchell, from choking while the eighth-graders were eating together. Kendall got a piece of her meatball sandwich lodged in her windpipe, and Abby performed the Heimlich maneuver, allowing Kendall to breathe again.
Susan Mitchell was so grateful to her daughter’s friend, she alerted the Celtics organization’s Heroes Among Us program. According to Celtics public relations director Heather Walker, Mitchell sent in a copy of the story The Daily New published that described Abby’s ability to keep her head in a crisis and perform so well under pressure.
The Celtics’ event was tailor-made for Abby, the 5-foot-9 center on her basketball team. She and her family were taken to Boston by limo, Walker said, and got a behind-the-scenes tour of the Celtics operation. She also had a chance to meet and have her picture taken with Celtics players Avery Bradley and Courtney Lee.
Then, during a break between periods of Wednesday night’s game, the Celtics brought Abby and Kendall on the court to let everyone present know how special she is. After that, about 18,000 people stood up and cheered, Walker said.
“Individuals are selected as a Hero Among Us for going above and beyond to help those in the community,” Walker said. “Abby saved Kendall’s life and definitely deserved to be honored.”
This year’s Timmy Trot 5K road race raised more than $6,200 for a worthy charity, according to Salisbury fire Chief Rick Souliotis. More than 150 runners and a lot more walkers took part in the Nov. 24 event.