This happened yesterday, too, but it deserves its own post. My sister called to tell us that she had saved someone's life. Seriously. The night before, at a restaurant.

Judy is a registered nurse. Out to dinner for her husband's birthday, she noticed a man at a nearby table, and recognized he had Parkinson's disease. What she didn't know is that the man was also blind. His wife was cutting his food for him.

My sister went to the ladies' room, and when she returned, the room was in chaos. Someone was attempting to perform the Heimlich Maneuver on the man with Parkinson's - but he was already unconscious. Apparently instead of eating the piece of meat his wife had cut for him, he had picked up the big piece she was cutting from - and swallowed it. And no one had the slightest idea what to do.

Judy asked if anyone had called 911 yet. They had. Calm and collected, she laid the man out on the floor, undid his shirt and performed CPR. Everyone was shouting things to her, telling her what to do. Everyone was wrong and she ignored them.

She brought him back.

She worked on the man til EMS arrived. The technicians inserted a long instrument down the man's throat - way longer than any Heimlich could have reached - and brought out what looked like half a roast. They took him to the hospital. He's alive because of Judy.

Is that completely amazing?

My favourite part of the story is Mark, my brother-in-law, saying: I knew you would know what to do. I knew you would come out of the bathroom, take charge of the situation, and help that man.

OK everyone, let's all go get certified in CPR!


mkk said...

Great story! Hooray for Judy!

You're absolutely right, Laura, everyone should get certified or re-certified in CPR. The American Heart Association changes its protocol every few years, based on the successes or failures of those who perform CPR in real-life situations.

Obviously, it's one thing to be able to perform CPR (or the Heimlich maneuver) on Resussie Annie and quite another to perform it successfully on an actual person. That takes amazing poise, courage, and skill, all of which Our Heroine Judy clearly has in abundance. But, then, you and I already knew that about her.

Anonymous said...

Yeah Her!!!!!!!!!! WTG Judy!

Crabbi said...

Wow, great job, Judy! What a wonderful story.

David Cho said...

Wow! Go Judy! What a story.

What I am wondering is how the man swallowed such a big piece. Even if you are blind, can't you feel the size?

laura k said...

What I am wondering is how the man swallowed such a big piece.

I wondered this too. Like, couldn't he feel it was too big in his mouth and spit it out? Or did that have something to do with his Parkinson's? Maybe Judy or Mkk could enlighten us.

Sass said...

Your sister sounds like an amazing woman.

Kyahgirl said...

Go Judy! My mom and three sisters are all nurses. Nurses rock!

laura k said...

She is and they do.