A 12-year-old kid from Pittsburgh is being praised for his quick action and perceptive nature after he noticed a friend, who lives in Texas, was starting to act strangely on Snapchat.
Gabe Rongier had been talking with his friend, who he met on the social media app through a mutual buddy, when he noticed a sharp change in the girl’s emotions. According to CBS Pittsburgh, the girl shared a troubling post that read she “wouldn’t be here tomorrow.”
Gabe, not aware of how to alert the authorities in Texas about the girl possibly being a danger to herself, called the suicide stanby hotline.
“I called the suicidal prevention services and it linked me to Officer Chandler [in Texas,]” Gabe told the outlet. “He went to her house, checked up on her. The next day he called me and said, ‘She’s fine. It’s real.’”
Gabe’s parents, Fred and Lori, were notified by investigators that they used geotracking to locate the girl and that they got to the scene in time to abort with any plans she may have had.
“Of course, I’m very proud of him, but I really hope that other young people his age might see the story and also be inspired to also take action to help somebody in need just like Gabe did,” Lori said. Fred added, “When he went to bed, I always kiss him and, I’ve been telling him since that day, ‘You’re my little hero.’”
Officer Chandler also sent Gabe, who wants to be a SWAT officer one day, a package in the mail to thank him for his service. Included with a letter was a law enforcement token, called a “Challenge Coin,” and a badge.
“I feel relieved that she’s OK,” Gabe said. “I feel like I did something good.”