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Girl Scout uses years of training to save a life during rafting trip

<i>WFTS via CNN Newsource</i><br/>This past summer
WFTS via CNN Newsource
This past summer

By Robert Boyd

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    TAMPA, Florida (WFTS) -- Girl Scouts are known for their cookies, but they also need to be recognized for their survival skills. This past summer, 17-year-old scout Elizabeth Fiore put those skills to the ultimate test, saving a little boy’s life.

Fiore will never look at a river quite the same, following her Girl Scout rafting trip through the Grand Canyon.

“This kind of put her outside of her comfort zone because she does not like water. This was the first time she was ever away from home, away from her parents, so it was a whole new experience all around,” said scout leader Stefanie Glover.

Troop 14261 had taken a break while rafting down the Colorado River when they heard the screams of a little boy in need of help.

“We were getting sand off our feet and started walking on the boat when there was a bunch of commotion going on, and I saw Elizabeth throwing in a buoy,” said Girl Scout Fallon Glover.

“I didn’t really think, if that makes sense. I just kind of did it,” said Fiore.

Fiore's ability to spot a dangerous situation and react quickly and appropriately gave other Good Samaritans time to rescue the boy.

“They pulled the kid in with a separate buoy and then the guy who was helping the kid was also kind of struggling, took our buoy, and me and Stefanie ended up pulling him into our boat,” said Fiore.

Thanks to Fiore and the Girl Scouts of West Central Florida, everyone involved made it out of the river safely.

Dr. Sara Arias-Steele, VP of Programs and Partnerships for Girl Scouts of West Central Florida, said she was proud but not surprised about Fiore's actions.

“We equip all of our girls with all the safety knowledge they need prior,” said Arias-Steele. "We were incredibly proud to hear that Elizabeth, in a moment that would have anyone panicking, had the quick thinking, the knowledge to know exactly what to do. She just took action and she ultimately saved someone’s life."

Fiore said she never thought all those years of training would actually lead to saving a life.

“Learning that kind of stuff is kind of overlooked, I guess. You think, 'I don’t actually have to use this stuff until you actually do,' but I’m glad I was there to do it,” said Fiore.

Fiore was even honored with the prestigious Girl Scout Medal of Honor, only given to those scouts who have saved someone’s life.

But she said she doesn’t think of herself as a hero.

“I think I did what I had to do since I was there. I mean, I was in the position to do something, so I did, so I don’t think I was a hero. I think I was just kind of in the right place at the right time,” said Fiore.

You could even say heroism runs in the family. Fiore's dad, Dan, who encouraged her to join the Girl Scouts, is a retired firefighter.

“I believe this is very important to be on ABC Action News because once a Girl Scout, always a Girl Scout, and you’ll go very far if you join,” he said.

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