Roanoke fifth-grader honored for saving little girl from car

Little girl came skipping down big hill at same time car was speeding by

ROANOKE – A fifth-grader saved a little girl from being hit by a car.   With a bright yellow belt and badge Riley Houtz stands at the corner helping students cross the street.

But one day wasn't like the rest when a little girl came skipping down the big hill in front of Grandin Court Elementary School in Roanoke.

(Courtesy: Roanoke City Schools)

"It's getting really close, she's about to cross and I yell at her to stop and she stops just in time so the car can cross," said Houtz.

"He did exactly what I asked him to do. Not stop a car but stop the child," said Kristen Shelor who oversees the Grandin Court Elementary School Safety Patrol.  "I heard him yell at her to stop. It was definitely a close one but she stopped, she listen to him and he has that rapport with the students and the parents and he did exactly what he was supposed to do that day."

Sixteen fifth-graders make up the safety patrol, helping in the cafeteria, crosswalks and front doors of the school.

"These children help model the expectations for our preschoolers, for our kindergartners. Then throughout the year they help us as adults monitor what's going on," said Shelor.

Riley Houtz recieves award in Richmond from AAA Mid-Atlantic (Courtesy: Roanoke City Schools)

Houtz was recognized for his actions. He went to Richmond, getting the AAA Mid-Atlantic Foundation for Safety and Education award. He's the only student from our area, out of the top 10 nominees excelling in leadership, dependability, character and academics.  

"If people don't get across the road safely while cars are coming they could get hurt like that the almost did. They need to get to school safely," said Houtz.

Riley's helping make sure that happens.

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