Last week, we met 15-year-old Anna Reid of Westfield, NJ. Anna had taken Red Cross Babysitter’s Training along with other members of her Girl Scout Troop when she was 11. A few weeks ago, she put that training to good use by saving a choking 3-year-old.
“I was babysitting Lia and her 5-year-old brother Matthew that day. We went to the library in the morning and when we came back home, I heated up some pizza for lunch. Lia took an awfully big bite and choked almost instantly! Her face turned red, she couldn’t speak, couldn’t breathe at all. She looked completely stunned!”
Anna said she didn’t have time to think and that her babysitter’s training kicked in automatically. She did five back blows between Lia’s shoulder blades but nothing happened. Then she started doing abdominal thrusts and after a few, the offending bite was ejected from Lia’s throat. As she told the story, Anna’s rosy-cheeked face dissolved into a glowing smile and you could just feel her confidence bubble up to wrap her from head to toe!
This was a chilling story to hear. It was one of those random events that you never think can happen to you or anyone you know. But as the Red Cross reminds people, emergencies can strike anytime, anywhere. We shudder to think what may have happened if Anna wasn’t there for Lia that day.
We hope more teens are encouraged to takeBabysitter’s Training and become empowered to successfully avert tragedies – just like Anna Reid.
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