It’s every parent’s worst nightmare: discovering that your son or daughter is facing an emergency, potentially life-threatening situation.
While it would be bad enough to be given this news by somebody else, imagine being informed by your child themselves – at the very moment of danger.
That’s exactly what happened to one mom, a 911 dispatcher in Madisonville, Texas.
Dispatcher Layla Wray is more than used to responding to emergencies, but she probably would have desperately hoped that she’d never have to respond to a call from her own family.
But when her teenage daughter called 911 at around 12:20 a.m. on Jan 7, Layla was forced to act with the usual quick-thinking and calmness of an emergency phone operator.
On the call, Cassidy, Layla’s panicked-sounding 14-year-old daughter, tells her there’s a fire in the house.
Speaking urgently into the phone, Cassidy says:
“Mommy, mommy, it’s Cassidy. The house is on fire.”
Layla’s first response is to say, “What?” and we can imagine she probably spoke before the news had time to process in her brain.
A moment later, Layla is back in professional mode.
Despite how terrified she must feel for her daughter, she manages to stay calm and take all the information she needs from Cassidy.
After learning that the fire is raging in her daughter’s back porch, Layla checks to make sure everyone is awake in the house, before she reassuringly says:
“Okay, hold on, hold on, hold on. I’m going to get somebody out to you, okay?”
It’s clear that Cassidy is in a state of shock – she’s stammering and unable to properly get her words out.
Layla continues to reassure her daughter as she starts to cry, telling her that she has already sent someone out to tackle the blaze.
The call, which lasts for 5 minutes, sees Layla switch between mom mode and work mode. She gives Cassidy instructions on what to do, and even has to break up an argument between her two younger children.
There’s something pretty amusing about the situation: her daughter’s home is on fire, but Layla still has it in her to warn her children:
“If you two don’t stop fighting, I swear to God.”
Fortunately, thanks to Layla’s ability to keep a cool head, her family escaped the blaze without harm.
The family’s possessions weren’t so lucky, however – most of them were damaged beyond recognition in the blaze.
A fundraiser was set up to support the Wrays, and Madison County Sheriff Travis Neeley told ABC News that the community has rallied behind Layla and her children in this difficult time of their lives.
“You would not believe the outpouring of donations and contributions coming in. Clothes, shoes and money contributions pouring in. They pretty much have to start over with everything.”
One citizen even paid for the family to stay in a hotel while they sorted permanent accommodation.
There’s no denying that if the mom of the year award was a real thing, Layla would be a strong contender.
She did her job, comforted her daughter, made sure everyone was safe, and broke up her kids’ argument in a matter of 5 minutes. What a supermom!
You can listen to the harrowing 911 call in the video below.
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