Rescuer advocates for CPR training in all restaurants
By Robert Jordan
Dunn Daily Record
LILLINGTON – A dinner with friends at The Sports Zone in Lillington became a near nightmare with a happy ending for an unidentified victim and an Erwin woman who saved her life.
Connor Stephenson, a photographer, realtor and martial arts enthusiast who lives in Erwin was out with several friends enjoying dinner on Wednesday, July 20.
“We had just finished eating and were sitting at the table talking when I heard a female voice calling for help,” she shared. “I immediately jumped up and ran over to their booth. The lady was choking. As we pulled her out and onto the floor, she became unconscious.”
Connor said her arms were not long enough to wrap all of the way around the victim to correctly perform the Heimlich maneuver. “No one else was comfortable attempting the Heimlich, so I did the best I could.”
Connor’s efforts cleared the victim’s airway and the lady regained consciousness. After a short while, the victim was able to return to her seat in the booth.
Surprisingly, Connor has never taken a course on how to save a life. “Most of my family works in the medical field. I really think I just acted on instinct.”
She says that taking a life-saving course is now an omission she intends to soon rectify, but she wants others to take it, too.
“After handling this scary situation last week it really brought it to my attention that more people, especially restaurant staff, should have CPR training. Choking situations can very quickly turn into an (sic) fatal event. I feel like it should be mandatory for at least one person on each shift to have this type of training in the restaurant business,” she wrote in a Facebook post.
Harnett County Emergency Medical Services will provide life-saving courses to groups interested in learning.
As Connor Stephenson learned, waiting for a need before one attends the training could lead to a matter of life and death.