Chris White (right, with his big brother) and his little brother Myles (left) were wounded in the August rampage. (Fundraise.com )
Staff writer Staci Parks reports:
A 911 call taker and the 13-year-old DeSoto boy she talked through the worst night of his life were honored as heroes Monday.
For dispatcher Nori Kelly, the Aug. 7 phone call from Chris White will resonate because of how selfless the teen was during a rampage that killed his mother and sister and left him and his younger brother wounded.
“I think this [call] stood out because he was trying to protect his brother and sister,” the 31-year veteran dispatcher said. “He wanted to make sure they were safe.”
Kelly and the DeSoto teen each received a 911 Medal of Honor at the Texas 911 Heroes Awards ceremony, hosted by AT&T and U.S. Best Repairs at Dallas’ Latino Cultural Center. Chris, who is still recovering, could not attend.
The night the teen was shot, police say, Erbie Bowser killed his ex-girlfriend and her daughter in Dallas before storming the DeSoto home of his estranged wife, Zina — Chris’ mother.
Authorities say Bowser battered down the back door and lobbed a grenade inside, then entered the home and shot Zina Bowser and her 28-year-old daughter, Neima Williams. Chris was shot twice in the rampage, standing in the path of a bullet that also struck his 10-year-old brother, Myles.
Despite his injuries, one of which damaged his spine, Chris still managed to call 911 and hid in a closet with Myles and their 3-year-old nephew.
During the 12-minute call, Kelly kept the wounded Chris on the line and calm. He told her he was struggling to breathe and was scared because he was losing the feeling in his legs.
Outside, police say, the gunman was out of ammunition and pretended to be among the injured when officers arrived. Bowser was arrested and remains jailed on counts of capital murder and aggravated assault.
Although Kelly hasn’t had the chance to meet Chris face-to-face yet, she said she thinks about him and that night often.
“I think that’s part of the nervousness, putting a face to a call,” she said. “Just thinking about it still chokes me up. I don’t know what I’ll do when I meet him.”
Anyone hoping to help Chris and his brother can visit www.chrisandmyleswhite.com or the family’s Fundraise.com page.