YONKERS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — An 11-year-old girl was reunited with the hero who saved her from two dogs in a vicious attack in June.
Jaelyn Rodriguez barely survived the attack that happened on her walk to the bus stop on her last day of school.READ MORE: Crowds Flock To Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting: 'Always Been Magical'
Two giant mastiff-type dogs went after her and wouldn’t let go until passerby Jose Jimenez — who was driving nearby — pulled over and beat the dogs off.
He then drove a terrified Jaelyn to the hospital.
“She was really scared, the only thing she said is ‘take me to the hospital please and call my mom’,” the good Samaritan said.
On Wednesday, Jimenez was reunited with Jaelyn as he was given the 2017 Good Samaritan Award in Yonkers. He says the story that started with a vicious attack now has a happy ending.
“Today is the day that we can say me and Jaelyn, we did it,” Jimenez said.
Jaelyn still has scars from the attack by the two dogs that had to euthanized that day.
“It was just trying to get help I guess, just trying to get saved and away from the dogs,” Jaelyn said.READ MORE: Jacqueline Avant, Wife Of Music Executive Clarence Avant, Found Shot To Death In Beverly Hills Home Invasion
Her mother says she’s grateful for Jimenez’s quick thinking.
“I’m so grateful for him, very grateful,” Teresa Rolon tells CBS2’s Cindy Hsu. “You never think it’s going to happen to you, not that.”
Jaelyn’s mother had taught her daughter all about protecting herself from strangers.
“You always think it’s a person, don’t speak to anybody, don’t get into anyone’s car, but you never think you’re going to be face to face with two dogs on the hunt,” Rolon said.
In Jaelyn’s thank you card to Jimenez, she calls him her guardian angel and thanks him for saving her life.
“When that thing happened, you can’t think, you have to go straight and do something,” he said.
Jimenez was hailed by citizens and officials alike.
“You’re only a hero if you’re willing to risk your life to save the life of the other person,” Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said, and that’s exactly what Jimenez did.MORE NEWS: Student Caught With Gun, Thousands Of Dollars Cash At Brooklyn School
CBS2 reports the owner of the dogs was charged with reckless endangerment. The animals had escaped at least two other times.