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A True Hero.

We have heroes.  Scientists and doctors make life-saving discoveries.  Perhaps they are rewarded with a Nobel Prize or a research grant.  Soldiers go beyond the call of duty to save civilians or other soldiers.  They may be honored with a service medal.  Professional athletes reach a historic milestone or set a record.  They get a bonus or go into the hall of fame or record books.  Even child passenger safety advocates, who save the lives of children every day, can be honored for their efforts at a national, state or local conference.

For some heroes, their moment of fame may be limited to publicity.  One, Antonio Diaz Chacon, struck me as a true hero that stands among the best of any of those I’ve mentioned.  This, according to the Associated Press writer, Jeri Clausing.

Phillip Garcia, 29, had snatched the girl moments earlier on Monday afternoon in Albuquerque, taking her away in a blue van, police said.

Diaz’s husband, Antonio Diaz Chacon, jumped in his black pickup and gave chase. Garcia tried to lose him by driving through a maze of residential streets, “turning, and turning,” Diaz Chacon, a 24-year-old mechanic said Tuesday night as a swarm of media stood outside his home to hear his story. The events were interpreted and relayed from Spanish to English by his wife.

Finally, Diaz Chacon said, the man crashed into a telephone pole.

Garcia fled on foot, and Diaz Chacon grabbed the girl and took her home. Garcia then returned to his wrecked van and took off but was later captured by police, authorities said.

Thank you, Mr. Chacon, for preventing a tragedy, one that is every parent’s worst nightmare.  You deserve your moment of fame!

2011 KIM Conference Notes & Comments

I’m still here in Orlando enjoying a few extra days with the family. It’s been a hectic week with the KIM Conference, family obligations & lots of networking (and Mojitos)!  Tonight I’m giving my liver a break and trying to catch up on work-related stuff. 

Overall, it was a great conference attended by many of the most dedicated CPS professionals in the industry.  I had attended the 1st and 2nd KIM Conferences here in Orlando but missed all the subsequent ones so it was nice to be back and see how its grown over the years.  Darren and I presented a workshop on Day 1: Using Social Media to Expand & Enhance CPS Education in the Era of Technology.  I thought it went really well and we received positive feedback and comments so hopefully our attendees were pleased with the information they received.  Ryan from Dorel offered to hold my “baby” during the presentation and he was so cute with “him” that I had to snap a pic.  Thanks, Ryan – you’re the bestest baby holder in the whole world!    

They Survived

You probably know ketchupqueen as a frequent commenter to CarseatBlog and she has even contributed an article or two for us. If you visit Car-Seat.org, you know her sage advice given as a Child Passenger Safety Technician and her community spirit. I’ve “known” her for years in cyberspace and even had a chance to meet her and her family last summer briefly (oh so briefly, lol!) inside a very dark rental car in a parking garage. (Hmm, that sounds bad, but I was just giving her a hand installing carseats—really!)

This is ketchupqueen’s family’s story of survival following a horrific rollover crash. As a tech, Anne knew how to protect her family and make sure they were safe, plus she had a little “inside” information that most “average” parents don’t have. As you read through our interview with her, you’ll see how this inside information helped keep her kids safe. This crash, while not sensational enough to make the news in Phoenix, has garnered the attention of the Special Crash Investigations (SCI) unit at NHTSA. SCI collects data from unique crashes and that data aids in designing safer vehicles.

Goodbye 1 and 20 (don’t let the door hit you on the way out): Kids safest in rear-facing car seats until age 2!

Children should ride in rear-facing car seats until they are at least 2 years old instead of 1, according to updated advice from The American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Can I get an “Amen”?   Or at least a collective “Woohoo”!

Trying to find more details.  We’ll post again as soon as we have more info!

March 20, 9:50p
And now, here’s NHTSA’s press release.

Here’s an excellent article from MedPage TODAY.