MONROE, Ind.- A Hoosier high schooler is making her community safer one device at a time. 17-year-old Mary Jones is adding AED’s wherever she can.
In an emergency, seconds matter and having an AED nearby could end up saving a life.
“Just knowing that it is there is really important,” said Mary Jones, a senior at Adams Central High School.
A couple years ago, Mary teamed up with The Dylan Williams Forever an All-Star Foundation out of Union City, Indiana. Dylan was an 8-year-old boy who died from a tragic accident at a baseball field years ago.
“He died with an AED not being on property and his family has now started a foundation to put AEDs in ballparks and public places,” said Jones.
Mary wanted to get an AED at the ballpark in her community. She did that but she didn’t stop there.
“It worked into getting more and more AED’s,” said Jones.
In just the past couple of years, Mary reached out to local businesses and raised enough money to install half a dozen AEDs in her area with the most need. She’s placed AEDs at the fairgrounds, parks, and an outdoor concert venue. So far, no one has had to use any of the devices and that’s the way Mary wants it to stay.
“I’m praying that it sits there, gets the dust on it, and it never has to be used but I know the rest of us that know it’s there can sleep a little better knowing it’s there and can be used if it’s needed,” said Jones.
Mary’s inspired to make an impact and serve her community. Recently, she received special recognition for her efforts. Mary was awarded The Pay It Forward Scholarship, which is full tuition from the University of St. Francis in Fort Wayne.
“I was definitely excited. I wasn’t expecting it at all,” said Jones.
Someday a stranger could get another chance at life because of one of these AED’s and because a high schooler had a caring heart.
“There’s a lot of families, people across the nation where they wished these devices would’ve been there. It would’ve saved their kid. It would’ve saved their family members, their loved ones, their classmates,” said Jones.
A local business recently donated a hot tub for Mary to raffle off to help with her fundraising efforts. Mary wants to study communications and plans to continue with this project when she attends University of Saint Francis next year.