Teacher credited with saving the life of a centenarian who was choking on cough drop

A teacher in Hawaii is credited with saving a person's life after he helped a woman who was choking on a cough drop. (Source: KHNL)
Published: Mar. 29, 2023 at 5:05 PM HST|Updated: Mar. 29, 2023 at 7:56 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - An Oahu teacher saved a centenarian from choking Tuesday ― which just happened to be National Choking Awareness Day.

Honolulu EMS said the 100-year-old was in a car traveling on Pali Highway when she started choking on a cough drop.

The family pulled the car to the side and a quick-thinking good Samaritan rushed to help.

“She was pretty small so I just reached in and grabbed her, pulled her out the car,” said Ryan Roberts.

The Iolani School ceramics teacher said he pulled over and performed abdominal thrusts on the woman.

“The third thrust she coughed out the item and started crying,” Roberts said.

The woman was later taken to a hospital in stable condition.

“Minutes count when you’re not breathing. After 4-6 minutes you could have serious brain damage.”

Tthe National Safety Council says 3,000 Americans died from choking in 2020.

About half were older than 74.

Roberts says he’s known how to perform abdominal thrusts for 20 years, but never had to use it until now.

Learn how to perform the life-saving technique with free classes at the AED Institute. You can find a link here.