Va. EMT made into American Girl doll
Richmond Ambulance Authority EMT April O'Quinn was nominated by her niece to have a "Heroes With Heart" doll made in her likeness
By Laura French
RICHMOND, Va. — A Virginia EMT was selected to be made into an American Girl doll after being nominated by her niece.
Richmond Ambulance Authority EMT April O'Quinn was nominated by her niece Lacey for the "Heroes With Heart" contest to honor frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a Richmond Ambulance Authority press release. O'Quinn was selected from submissions across the country as one of the contest's five grand prize winners.
"Lacey was on the other side [of the phone] screaming that we had won! I was in shock. I didn't know what to say so instead I cried for her," O'Quinn said in a statement. "The excitement and smiles as she opened her hero doll was all worth it."
As grand prize winners, O'Quinn and her niece were sent an American Girl doll made in O'Quinn's likeness with a custom outfit — her EMT uniform — and a $200 American Girl gift card.
"We at the Richmond Ambulance Authority are so excited for April and her niece Lacey. We're thankful American GIrl held a contest to recognize our frontline heroes and are thrilled to have one of our employees represent EMS," Richmond Ambulance Authority CEO Chip Decker said in a statement.
The other four winners were a pilot who flew doctors to Haiti to help fight the virus and return stranded U.S. citizens, a 17-year-old grocery store worker with asthma, a caregiver who helps to feed homeless people in her community, and a teacher who delivered books to her students' homes during the pandemic.