Completely Un-Related to Photography, But It Saves Lives…

After spending many of my adolescent summers as a lifeguard, being certified in CPR and lifesaving was a mandatory prerequisite. Luckily, I never had to use CPR or the Heimlich Maneuver on anyone during my lifeguarding stint, but rather spent my shifts tanning and checking out bikinis with my sunglasses on. But twice in the last year (and just yesterday) I had to use the Heimlich Maneuver. We were having a normal breakfast yesterday morning and my sons were eating cereal and fruit bars off the rotating Miralle breakfast menu. Then suddenly my wife let out a scream while she looked over at Micah, who will be two later this month. As he was holding his throat, his face was turning red and his eyes were bulging, while not making a sound. My wife started to panic, but without really thinking I calmly walked behind him, wrapped my arms around him and put my right hand in a fist, and gave him a quick thrust near his solar plexus region below his ribs an above his belly button. The obstruction of a balled-up piece of fruit bar popped out and he immediately started to breath and talk. We coolly told him he should take smaller bites of his food, and everything was back to normal. Just last fall Lauren’s grandmother Janey choked on something during our Thanksgiving dinner and I did the same thing, which easily opened her airway. I cannot stress how important it is to know the Heimlich and CPR especially if you have children or elderly family members. We also just enrolled both kids in swim lessons this week to prepare them for the pool parties and beach time this summer, which is another must for water safety and toddlers in my opinion.

There are different techniques for the Heimlich and CPR for adults, children, and infants and you can go to the American Heart Association site for more info on the Heimlich Maneuver and how to properly administer here:

And more information on CPR and getting certified here:


  1. Danny Inskeep says:

    Good Job Bro! I can picture my sister freaking out in that situation.

  2. OMG- FREAKIN MICAH! i love that he just started talking and eating again. that’s insane!!

    FYI- drowning is the #1 cause of death amongst children. Everyone needs to teach their kids how to swim, as well as take cpr/1st aid!!! What a nightmare 😐

    • I’m more afraid of the little guys drowning in the water than anything else. I still remember a couple scary episodes in our backyard when I was probably four or five years old before I really learned how to swim, and I was scared of the water for some time until we started going to swim team practices regularly…

  3. Rick Hall says:

    That’s scary…good thing you were there

  4. Just lost a friend to a massive heart attack last week here in the neighborhood. A nurse neighbor did CPR on him until the ambulance arrived, but too late. She told me later that with all of the CPR classes she’d taken over the years, she never imagined she would be doing compressions on someone she actually would know! The lesson – you’ll use the CPR/Heimlich when you least expect it, and it could easily be someone you love.

    Bill in Denver

  5. Don admit it, you’re still scared in the water! At the very least, you look it! Now Micah has bug eyes like you!

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