A 7-month-old child is safe after a Good Samaritan stepped in and saved her from choking at a North Carolina Golden Corral restaurant on Thanksgiving.
New mom Hannah Marie Jarvis was enjoying the holiday with her family at the buffet chain when her baby, Calli, started to choke.
“We were all at the Golden Corral. We were celebrating Thanksgiving,” Jarvis told local news station WLOS. “We were just feeding her some mashed potatoes. She just started gagging all of a sudden. She was choking.”
A waitress came over and yelled out asking if anyone could help the family.
Deborah Rouse, who was dining at the restaurant, volunteered and began performing the Heimlich maneuver on the infant.
“This lady named Deborah intervened, and she started performing the Heimlich maneuver on her,” Jarvis said to WLOS. “She held her down, like this, taking multiple blows to her back. It was miraculous, she started breathing again.”
The Heimlich maneuver is typically performed by giving quick compressions under the ribcage for adults. However, for infants, forceful blows to the back while the baby is face down with its head supported is the recommended technique.
Rouse, who said she is a mother of five, quickly executed the Heimlich.
Jarvis was overjoyed and said she and her family hugged Rouse at the restaurant, but forgot to get her phone number. Later, Jarvis said she told her husband, who serves in the Marines, how thankful she was for the woman.
“I will never forget the many tears that were shed today in Golden Corral as this angel stepped in to preform [sic] the heimlich maneuver that saved my baby from choking to death. Most importantly, thank you Jesus for hearing our desperate cries for Calli this Thanksgiving afternoon,” Jarvis wrote on Facebook, along with a picture of Rouse posing with Calli. “Christ was with us today.”
Jarvis, who told WLOS she wanted to track down Rouse to thank her again for her actions, caught Rouse’s attention with her social media post that was shared nearly 100 times.
“Good evening Mrs. Hannah, I saw the news article and I messaged you my number! I’m elated that Callie is doing well, y’all have been on my mind since yesterday! Love you all and take care,” Rouse responded, Yahoo Lifestyle reported.
Rouse later responded to Jarvis’ social media post, writing, “What a blessing!! What a Thanksgiving.” She added “I’m soooooooo THANKFUL to God for having me in the right place at the right time!!! God, You are WORTHY.”
Jarvis said Calli was evaluated at the hospital after the incident and is doing well.