When Jim first noticed the man sitting at the next table in the fast-food restaurant, he thought the man was having a heart attack. His hand was on his chest, and he looked scared. As the man’s lips darkened in color, Jim knew he should do someting. Jim got up, walked over to the man, and asked, “Are you choking?”
As he looked back on the incident, Jim was amazed. “I was thinking it was a heart attack, but the word ‘choking’ came out, because in my health class last year, that was what I was taught to ask.”
To Jim’s surprise, the man nodded, and Jim went into action. He called out “Help!” loudly, then turned to the man and said, “I can help you.” As he stepped behind the man, Jim turned to the manager of the restaurant, who had appeared at his side, and said, “He’s choking. Call an ambulance.”
Once behind the victim, Jim wrapped his arms around him and made a fist with one hand. He placed it in the middle of the man’s abdomen, below his breastbone but above his navel. He remembered to place the thumb side of his fist against the man and then covered it with his other hand. Keeping his elbows out, he pressed his fist into the man’s abdomen with a quick upward thrust.
It took three thrusts before he heard the food coughed from the man’s throat and onto the floor. Jim heard the ambulance siren as he helped the man sit down. …