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When six-year-old Karter Thorpe was running errands with his grandmother, who he calls “Mimi”, he noticed something unsettling from his seat in the back. While pulling into the parking lot of a Lowe’s in Franklin, Virginia, Karter saw a man lying face down on the pavement. He was lifeless and was probably in terrible danger.
Karter watched as the man, who was sprawled out on the pavement next to a truck, start to twitch. Terrified at what he was watching, Karter yelled at his grandmother Carolyn Cook. And she listened to the boy’s shout and turned around. But she didn’t want to get out of the car to help the stranger. Nevertheless, Karter refused to take his grandmother’s word as law.
“No, you have to stop!,” the boy shouted as loudly as he could. “He’s hurt, he’s hurt. You have to go back!”
At first, grandma tried to tell Karter to forget about the stranger. That he had to learn to mind his own business and not pay strangers any mind. But he refused to allow the cynicism into his life. And Karter kept shouting for her to stop the car and return to the injured man.
“I said that a few times and then she turned around to show me I was wrong,” Karter told CBS affiliate WTKR in Virginia.
Eventually, Cook listened. She made a U-turn. Not to help, but to prove her grandson wrong. When they got to the truck, she saw the man and knew that he was in trouble. She had been wrong, and her six-year-old grandson had been right.
“He was gasping for air,” Cook said. She stopped the car and ran to the dying man’s aid.
Without hesitation, the grandmother pulled out her cell phone and dialed 911. Then, as she talked to the local dispatcher, a passerby rushed over and began performing CPR. While they waited for the ambulance to arrive, they prayed that the stranger would make it.
Karter raised his eyes to the sky and pleaded to Jesus to bring the man back.
The ambulance came and whisked the stranger away. Because Cook was never able to get the man’s name, she had no idea what happened to her. Then his family reached out to her on Facebook, a whole week after the terrifying incident.
Although the man wishes to remain anonymous, the family told Cook that he suffered a massive heart attack. And if it wasn’t for Karter’s desire to stop the car and help, he would have died in the Lowe’s parking lot.
“I still get weepy. I`m just thankful. Thankful that God put me in that parking lot when he did,” said Cook. “[Karter] would not take no for answer, he was determined and I’m glad he was.”
Because little Karter had a heart of gold and refused to let the man die, he saved his life. If he had listened to his grandmother, the heart attack would have taken the stranger’s life. Instead, Karter listened to this instinct and helped save the stranger’s life.
Now, the man’s family is calling Karter their “little angel.”
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