Edison Elementary in Centralia Gets Bicycle Helmets for All After Student’s Injury


After a student at Edison Elementary School recently crashed his bike and received severe head trauma, the Parent Teacher Organization came together Friday to provide helmets to all students who did not have one. 

In all, 182 helmets were handed out on Friday following a safety assembly led by Assistant Chief Rick Mack, of the Riverside Fire Authority.

“After (the crash), we decided to make it our mission to get helmets to the kids who don’t have one,” Calah Huffman, with the PTO, said.

Through donations from Walmart, Tiki Tap House and individuals, the PTO raised more than $1,500 toward their project. 

Colleen Baine, PTO president, said they wanted to emphasize safety. 

“I’m a helicopter mom and worry about my kids,” she said. “I just want them to be safe.”

Baine has two children at Edison Elementary School.

Lyfe Prater, 6, was one of the students to receive a shiny, new red helmet alongside her classmates. She said it is important to wear a helmet to avoid getting injuries from a fall. Prater is the proud owner of five bikes, and donned her new safety gear after receiving it. 

At the safety assembly, Mack emphasized that if a helmet is struck one time, it needs to be replaced. He demonstrated the proper way to wear it. Each child without a helmet at home was fitted with their new protection in their respective classrooms. 

He also stressed the importance of life jackets, seat belts, being cautious when around fireworks and making sure fire alarms are present and in working order. 

“I need you to promise me something,” Mack told the cafeteria full of kindergarten through third-grade students. “Ask your mom, dad, grandparents, whoever you live with, to allow you to check your smoke detector. If you don’t have one, call me and I’ll get you one.”

Garnering applause from the excited crowd of students, Mack told them this summer firefighters and police officers will be stopping children when they are seen doing something good. 

Their ticket? A free happy meal. 

“Enjoy this last week of school and then have a safe and fun summer,” Mack said. 

Throughout the assembly, Mack performed two songs on a guitar, one stressing the importance of not playing with matches, and the other one about fire alarms.