Second-grader receives Girl Scout Medal of Honor


Eight-year-old Aubrey Kelsay of Encinitas has received a national Girl Scout Medal of Honor for helping to save the life of a teacher at Park Dale Lane Elementary School.

Aubrey accepted the medal and a letter of commendation during an all-school assembly. Debbie Rider of Carmel Valley, past chair of Girl Scouts San Diego, made the presentation on behalf of Anna Maria Chávez, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA).

Kindergarten teacher Bethany Luna was on the Park Dale Lane campus last August when she began choking and was unable to breathe or speak. Several children who encountered her failed to recognize the gravity of the situation. But Audrey became worried when she saw her former kindergarten teacher. “I love Mrs. Luna and could tell she was in trouble,” the second-grader recalls.

Aubrey took action by alerting a teacher, who teamed up with other staff members to aid their colleague.

Luna credits her former student with saving her life. “If Aubrey had not recognized there was something wrong, bravely evaluated the situation and approached me, then calmly responded in a mature and appropriate manner, I might not be here to watch my own three children grow up.”

In the commendation letter read at the assembly, GSUSA’s Chávez called Aubrey “a girl of courage, confidence and character” and “a living testament to the highest principles of the Girl Scout Promise and Law.”

Aubrey is the daughter of Calli and Matt Kelsay. She enjoys participating in Brownie Troop 1043, skateboarding, surfing, and playing the piano.