Local Girl Scout gets national Scouting award for saving her grandmother

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MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS, OH - Leave it to a fearless girl scout to save the day.

Sunday Lila Szojka, 13, received a national Girl Scout Award for her courage under pressure. In March Lila saved her grandmother's life when she began choking at an Applebee's restaurant in Middleburg Heights.

"I took a bite of my baked potato and it must have got lodged in my throat," said Lila's grandmother Laura Noar. "Then I remember I couldn't breathe a lot of it is a blur to me."

That blur now just a distant memory thanks to Lila's quick thinking. At the time, Lila, 12, had recently completed a first aid and CPR training course where she learned how to perform the Heimlich.

"I don't feel like a hero because I've seen other people do incredible things," said Lila.

The CEO of the Northeast Ohio branch of Girl Scouts joined family and friends for an award presentation at the same restaurant where Lila saved her grandmother. While there, Lila was presented with one of the organization's highest awards.

"We have about 28,000 girls involved in girl scouts in Northeast Ohio and I'm proud of every single one of them," said Jane Christyson, the CEO of the regional branch. "It's wonderful when one of them gets singled out on a national basis for one of these kind of awards."

Lila is one of only five to earn the award from Northeast Ohio in nearly a decade. She is encouraging other girls to join the group that now has a special place in her heart.

"If anyone else, like, thought about doing it they should because you never know when something like that could come in handy," explained Lila.