Club Honors 10-Year-Old Hero - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

03/30/05

Club Honors 10-Year-Old Hero

A young D'Iberville boy is the inspiration behind a new award recognizing young heroes. On Wednesday, the Biloxi Exchange club honored 10-year-old Trey Romero for his courage during a boating accident last year.

You may remember that a boat flipped over while getting ready for the Smoking the Sound competition. Trey and his father, a Biloxi firefighter, were fishing nearby and rushed to the scene.

As he watched his father desperately try to save the lives of the two crewman, the fourth grader says he discovered a side of himself he didn't know existed.

"It was very scary for me," said Trey.

It wasn't his fear that earned young Romero recognition, but how he manage to overcome it.

"Well, my dad jumped off the boat. I couldn't believe he trusted me to drive the boat back to the shore, but I did it," he said.

Trey's father Ray Romero, Jr. said, "I kind of glanced back and he seemed like he was doing fine. He looked at me and even at one point he said, 'I'll be okay' and so I went and did what I had to do and he did himself real good. I was really proud."

When the Biloxi's Exchange Club heard the story, it wanted to honor Trey. Members asked the national office's approval to create an award for exceptional young people.

"We just felt that from the story we got, that for a 9-year-old, he really exhibited some deep thought and some action that you would not expect from a 9-year-old," said Al Sissom.

Now a year older and a year wiser, Trey says he's grown from the experience.

"I have learned to never panic when something is going wrong. Just to stay calm and everything will be all right."

One of the two men involved in the boating accident, Randy Linebach of Michigan, died. Biloxi Exchange Club members say they have asked that the award inspired by Trey Romero be named in his honor.

by Danielle Thomas

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