Mother saves daughter after drowning using CPR

A woman new to Central Texas is sharing her story after using CPR to save her daughter’s life.

“She’s the ultimate girly-girl. She loves all things sparkly and pink and purple and unicorns and babydolls and butterflies, dancing,” says Melissa Garcia, talking about her daughter Maddie.

Maddie is an extraordinary little girl. And at six years old, she already has an incredible story.

Her family says moments with the aspiring doctor and dancer are special because after a near-death experience at the pool, they thought she wouldn’t be here today.

The image her older brother saw on that hot summer day three years ago is one he’ll never forget.

“I just saw her floating in the water. I thought she was gone,” her older brother told FOX44.

Their mother Melissa Garcia was close by, and rushed to Maddie’s rescue – fearing all hope was lost.

“I yanked her up by her wrists, and she was kind of just limp and blue,” Garcia recalls.

Garcia knew CPR. But by the time she got to her, little Maddie was unresponsive without a pulse. She still did all she could to save her daughter.

“It took about ten to 12 minutes for the paramedics to arrive, so I just nonstop was doing CPR on her,” Garcia says.

She says the ten to 12 minutes felt like a lifetime.

“Every time I would blow air in her mouth, water would come out. So I kind of tilted her to the side and lay her back down and keep going,” Garcia says.


Doctors were able to save Maddie’s life, but they call her a miracle – a miracle that would have been impossible without CPR.

So during summer months like these, Garcia spreads Maddie’s story to other families.

“If this is what I can do, if this is what good comes out of that is me spreading the word out about how important pool safety and first aid CPR training is, then that’s what I’m going to do to help other people,” Garcia says.

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9 First Aid Tips You’ll Actually Use

First aid tips—especially when shared by paramedics—focus on emergency situations and procedures.

It’s all about how to react when blood is spurting, parts are missing, or breathing has stopped. That’s all good information, but the best first aid tips are for the mundane injuries that are most likely to happen at the company picnic or a child’s birthday party.

You shouldn’t ignore the advice on calling 911 or learning CPR. But it’s good to know what first aid you can do for the little things.

1. Stop a Bloody Nose

young man with bloody nose looking mirror

MAURO FERMARIELLO/Science Photo Library/Getty Images

Bloody noses can happen without warning (and probably should be reported to your doctor), but the majority of bloody noses have help, usually in the form of digital trauma. That simply means nose-picking. If your nose starts bleeding and you didn’t do something to traumatize it, tell the doctor. Otherwise, keep your fingers out of your nostrils. If you can’t, learn how to stop a bloody nose.

2. Treat a Cut Finger

Finger with a bead of blood
 Jonathan Knowles/Stone/Getty Images

There’s nothing special about ​how to treat cut finger. You could use this first aid tip on a sliced nose, a split earlobe or a torn toe just as easily as a pinky finger. But when you do have blood dripping on the floor of your house it’s most likely coming from your digits. Thumbs, of course, are also included.

3. Treat a Sprain

sprained ankle

pixelfit/E+/Getty Images

Even if you’re not sliding into second base or crawling on rocks, everybody eventually gets a twisted ankle. You can sprain a wrist playing the Wii or taking out the garbage. As a normal adult, you need to know how to treat a sprain.

4. Remove a Splinter

Removing a splinter
Glass and Mirror

As far back as kindergarten, you had to know how to remove a splinter. From playground equipment to trees and debris, splinters are ubiquitous with growing up. But in case you missed some of the fine points, review how to do it right and help prevent an infection.

5. Stop Diarrhea

woman with abdominal pain

coloroftime / Getty Images

Even the most astute first aid instructor forgot to put first aid tips on how to stop diarrhea in the class. If you plan to travel outside your zip code, you might want to know how to battle the inevitable gastric somersaults you’re gonna feel. Not all rumbly tummies come from bad bugs, so you’ll likely need these tips at home, as well.


6. Treat Nausea


Image © Photodisc / Getty Images

It stands to reason that if it’s coming out one end, it’s coming out the other. There’s not too much you can do for throwing up that isn’t fixed by finding the cause of nausea. However, every little bit helps. You really should know how to treat nausea.


7. Kill Head Lice

head lice

Melanie Martinez

You bathe and you shampoo your hair. There’s absolutely no chance you could get head lice, right? Wrong. Head lice love a clean head of hair—it’s where they live. The good news is that it’s not the end of the world. Head lice aren’t particularly dangerous—they’re just really gross. You need to know how to kill head lice.


8. Treat Bug Bites

big mosquito bite

dorioconnell Getty Images

Head lice aren’t the only critters that bite. There are millions of little biting bugs out there. Lots of them are in your house right now. Besides cut fingers, the most used first aid tip of all will be how to treat bug bites.


9. Treat a Burn

Skin Burn


Touching the rack of a hot oven can really ruin the cookies. Luckily, you can pretty much handle the injury all by yourself. First, get off the computer and go put your finger under cold water. In 10 minutes, come back and check how to treat a burn.

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NJ dads hailed as heroes after performing CPR at Paterson softball game

Two dads from Paterson, New Jersey are being called heroes after their weekend on the softball field assistant-coaching their daughters’ game nearly ended with one woman dead.

Thankfully, John Molina is a Paterson firefighter and retired Paterson Police Lieutenant Washington Griffin spent nearly 30 years on the force.

Molina was standing along the first baseline when shouting and panic ensued behind the bench of the opposing team. A woman believed to be in her 50s had stopped breathing.

“For a person to take their last breath in my arms, that’s when everything kicked in,” said Molina. “I saw her head fall back into the chair,” said Molina, who rushed over.

Griffin spotted what was going on from across the field.

“He was putting her on her back and clearing her airway. He said she went into cardiac arrest and so I jumped in and helped with chest compressions,” said the retired lieutenant.

The woman’s face was turning blue. Panic ensued and children and family looked on.

The ‘Lady Ballers’ softball team players are about 9 or 10-years-old.

But Molina and Griffin knew exactly what to do. Working as a team to perform CPR, they eventually detected a heartbeat. Paramedics arrived and rushed the unnamed woman to St. Joseph’s Hospital.

Today, both were reluctant to be called heroes.

“It’s my job, my duty so I’m not gonna say hero,” said Molina.

And to their children – they are surely seen as superheroes.

I told my daughter if she is in a position to help, she should help,” said Griffin, whose daughter is 9.

What happened to the woman that caused her to lose consciousness is not being released. But from what Molina and Griffin have been able to gather, they believe she is awake, talking and hopefully doing well.

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Learn How To Save A Life – First Aid/CPR Classes for Groups & Corporations

CPR/First Aid Training – Corporate and Group Classes

UniFirst First Aid + Safety offers weekly CPR classes for companies and groups, UniFirst First Aid + Safety’s CPRAED and First Aid training program will help employers meet OSHA and other federal and state regulatory requirements for training employees how to respond and care for medical emergencies at work.

This 2-year certification course conforms to the 2015 AHA Guidelines Update for CPR and ECC, and the 2015 AHA and ARC Guidelines Update for First Aid.

Looking for a Team Building opportunity? Learn to save a life while providing a great team building exercise.


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3 Important Tips for Purchasing an AED (Defibrillator) – Need to Replace?

Thinking of buying an AED? Not sure if you need to replace your existing AED?

If you are thinking about purchasing a new AED, or curious if you’re old AED needs to be replaced, you’re probably scratching your head trying to figure out which AED is best for you. Relax, we wrote this article to take the stress out of buying an AED and provide you with real-world insights to help you make an informed decision to buy the right AED for you.


Let’s start off with a little background

Automated External Defibrillators, or AEDs, have been helping both first responders and ordinary individuals safely resuscitate SCA (Sudden Cardiac Arrest) victims and save lives without complex medical training. AEDs work by producing a small electrical charge that can reset a patient’s heart to its correct rhythm.

While easy-to-use portable defibrillators are only a few decades old, AEDs are so effective at saving lives that they’re estimated to increase SCA survival rates by a staggering 70%. Despite these statistics, many areas of the U.S. simply don’t have enough AEDs to go around. Experts estimate that an increase in AEDs to optimal levels could save more than 40,000 American lives each year – and that’s just one reason why it’s essential for more people to learn about and have access to this lifesaving device.


What to look for when purchasing an AED

Now we understand the role of an AED let’s take a look at 3 key factors you should take into consideration when purchasing an AED.



Upfront V Lifetime

One of the biggest mistakes we see when purchasing an AED is that buyers are looking at the upfront cost of the unit. However, not all AED’s are created equally. When considering purchasing a new or replacement AED it is important to look at “Lifetime ownership costs“. Typically we see most people own an AED for 10+ years, during that time you will replace batteries and pads several times. However, each manufacturer has a different life of their batteries and pads. So what may appear to be a more cost-effective AED solution upfront, actually turns out to be more expensive over the lifetime of the AED as you may have to replace batteries and pads more frequently in some units.

Quality Compression Feedback

Because you don’t always remember what you learned in class

Another important factor when selecting an AED is quality compression feedback, some AED’s have a very beneficial feature of providing real time feedback for compression depth and rates. Even though you learned CPR in class, having this live feedback during a SCA can be very helpful, after all having a little extra guidance can make the situation a little less stressful.


Synchronized Expiration Dates

You don’t want pads to expire while the battery still show’s good

Some AED’s have different life duration between pads and batteries. The problem here is that you will end up replacing pads while the battery is still good.




As many people would expect, the vast majority of AEDs (59%) in the U.S. are currently owned by first responders such as a policemen, firefighters, and EMTs. The next largest group of AED owners are schools (17%), followed by faith-based and recreational organizations, nursing homes and senior centers, and hospitals, clinics, and other medical centers. It’s a good idea to know the general places in which the equipment is most likely to be located, so, in case of emergency, you have a better shot at finding (or helping others to find) a nearby AED. In addition, if you or a loved one has a close family member with a heart condition, you may want to inquire about where the closest AED is, especially if traveling to remote or rural areas.

In the first 10 months after Chicago’s O’Hare Airport installed 49 AEDs on the premises, the devices were used 14 times, saving a total of nine lives – nearly 1 each month (and that’s only one airport). When it comes to helping an SCA victim, every second counts. According to statistics published by the American Heart Association, every additional minute AED use is delayed corresponds with a 10% reduction in patient survival rates. This means that in especially large areas or buildings, such as airports like O’Hare, it pays to have multiple AEDs located in different areas in order to facilitate easy access to the devices.



So which AED do we purchase?



Down and Dirty:

HeartSine 350P AED

AED cost is $1,225

Cost to maintain it over 10 years – $352  (batteries and pads)

DOES NOT HAVE Quality compression feedback

DOES HAVE synchronized expiration dates – replace supplies every 4th year.

Total cost of ownership for 10 years – $1,577


Best bang for your money & Best Quality:

Zoll AED Plus

AED cost is $1,995

Cost to maintain it over 10 years – $245 (batteries and pads)

DOES HAVE Quality Compression Feedback – says “push harder”

DOES HAVE synchronized expiration dates – replace supplies every 5th year.

Total cost of ownership for 10 years – $2,485


Best Value after the Zoll:

HeartSine 450P AED

AED cost is $1,595

Cost to maintain it over 10 years – $352 (batteries and pads)

DOES HAVE Quality Compression Feedback – Says “push faster” “push slower”

DOES HAVE synchronized expiration dates – replace supplies every 4th year.

Total cost of ownership for 10 years is $2,2


In our opinion, not that you asked,  The Zoll is a better purchase for $205 more (a little over $20 a year). It’s a more direct command for the rescuer to reduce human error. “Push Harder” is what the Instructor would tell you in class and this AED does that for you for a live rescue situation.  Zoll has a trade in program if you have older AED’s that are still in production. (not discontinued)

While AEDs save an increasing number of lives each year, many Americans don’t even understand what they are. This widespread lack of knowledge means that individuals may not be able to get full use of the life-saving equipment present in their community. Additionally, a lack of understanding means that many Americans are less likely to push for more AEDs in their schools, religious and community centers, and other public areas.

While the number of AEDs is increasing, especially in places like college and university campuses, it’s not increasing fast enough to help many SCA victims. However, increased education and awareness may be able to help. And hopefully, this awareness will help make death from an SCA into an uncommon occurrence.

To learn more about how AEDs (and proper training in their usage) can help save lives in businesses, schools, and other public places, contact UniFirst First Aid + Safety for a free consultation.

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East Haven Teen Performs Life-Saving CPR on His Mother

An East Haven teenager is being credited with saving his mother’s life when she went into cardiac arrest while the family was in upstate New York for a wrestling tournament.

“I don’t picture myself as a hero,” 16-year-old Vincenzo “Enzo” Bunce said. “I just I picture myself as someone who just knew what to do and had the training.”

Bunce learned CPR in an East Haven High School health class.

“It’s not a certification, but it’s a way to educate the kids,” head athletic trainer Marc Aceto said.

Aceto teaches students how to perform chest compressions to the tune of the timeless Bee Gees’ song, “Staying Alive.”

“Sometimes, I’m up in the middle of class singing the song out loud, you get a few chuckles,” Aceto said, “but they understand the rhythm of how to get the heart going, to do the compressions on the CPR.”

This past Friday morning Bunce and his family checked into a hotel for a club wrestling tournament in Lake Placid.

“My mother ,she was complaining that her heart was racing and then she sat down for a second then next thing I knew it I looked away for a second she was on the floor,” Bunce said.

Maria Bunce went into cardiac arrest. Bunce’s dad dialed 911.

“I put her on her back so she can breath easier and I started chest compressions,” he said. While humming “Staying Alive” in his head, Bunce put his training to use.

“I was terrified but I was calm at the same time, the training just kicked in and the adrenaline,” he said.

Bunce said he performed chest compressions for about 90 seconds until professional emergency personnel staying in town for a convention arrived. His mother was revived and she checked into a hospital.

“She told my friend’s father to tell me to wrestle my best and not to worry about her,” Bunce said.

Following tough defeats and a forfeit win on Saturday, he saved his best effort for the final of five wrestling matches Sunday afternoon.

“This is my last chance to win a match for my mother,” Bunce said.

It was dominating victory.

“I ended the match in less than 30 seconds,” he said.

“His compassion, his love for the sport, his love for his mother, his family, how strong he is and how mature he is at 16 to be able to do what he did, its unspeakable,” Aceto said.

Bunce said he just hopes more high schools start to offer the same type of training.

“So they can help save their parents’ life, another person’s life,” he said.

Bunce’s mother is still in recovery after being transferred to Yale-New Haven Hospital.

Bunce told NBC Connecticut he’s also received CPR training from the East Haven Fire Department explorer program for youth from the town.

With the goal of becoming a firefighter and paramedic, maybe Bunce will help save more lives in the future.


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It’s National CPR/AED awareness week – Here’s one thing you can do to help save a life

This week is CPR/AED awareness week – How can you make a difference?

When cardiac arrest occurs outside of the hospital, survival depends on immediate CPR, and unfortunately, almost 90% of people who suffer cardiac arrests die, according to AHA statistics.

This week commemorating CPR and AED education marks the perfect time to make sure employees know how easy CPR technique can be, and where the nearest AED is. In addition to the life-saving skills learned, A CPR class is a great team building opportunity.


Less than a third of cardiac arrest victims receive CPR, according to the AHA, because most bystanders feel helpless and worry that their efforts may actually make the situation worse. The fact of the matter is, CPR, especially if performed in the first few minutes of cardiac arrest, can increase a person’s chance of survival by two or even three times.

The thought of giving mouth-to-mouth to a coworker may be daunting, but it’s no longer necessary. Hands-Only CPR may help save lives until paramedics arrive, and it doesn’t involve mouth-to-mouth. There are only two steps; if you see a teen or adult suddenly collapse, call 911 and push hard and fast in the center of the chest to the beat of any tune that is 100 to 120 beats per minute.

The one thing you could do right now?  Schedule a class for you and your team – Learn CPR.


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Her father died. But this Valley senior brought him back with CPR learned at school.

Something didn’t sound right to Brie Salloum as she was getting ready for school one morning in early April. Weird noises echoed in the upstairs hallway. She compares the sounds to elongated snores, or deep, muffled gurgles.


Brie walked into her parents’ bedroom and found her father, Ray, lying in bed and gasping for breath.

“His teeth were gritted, and he grimaced,” her mother, Lisa Salloum, said. “I could see we were losing him.”

What happened next, medical professionals have told the family, was the beginning of “a miracle.”

Brie Salloum is a senior at Valley High School who is set to graduate Sunday at Drake University’s Knapp Center with 595 of her peers. She is a quiet, reserved 18-year-old who enjoys video games, hanging out with friends, and working at the movie theater at Jordan Creek Town Center.

Salloum puts up with school because “it’s obligatory,” she quips, but admits she enjoys it. She’s taken several advanced placement courses at Valley — AP chemistry, AP physics, AP psychology — you name it.

Her favorite class, Valley’s certified nursing assistant course, is a full-year program that allows students to earn CNA certification by the end of the school year. It’s led by Andrea Thompson, Salloum’s all-time favorite teacher.

“She makes the classroom calm,” Salloum said. “She’s like a mom to me. I really appreciate her. She’s a phenomenal teacher.”

During the CNA program, students — typically those interested in the medical field — are introduced to a variety of health careers.

One section lets students learn about emergency care, like attending to fractures and burns as well as cardiopulmonary resuscitation, also known as CPR. Salloum and her classmates completed the required training this year and are all CPR certified.

‘They’re calling him a miracle’

Ray was lying limp in his bed. Lisa yelled at Brie to dial 911.

She was about to until she saw that her mom was already on the phone. She also saw her mom trying to give her father CPR and realized she wasn’t doing it properly.

She jumped into action.

“I took the pillow out from under his head, had her move him down a little a bit so his head wouldn’t be on the headboard. Then I just started,” she said. “I was crying and yelling. I was scared that I was doing it wrong and he was just gone. Especially with CPR, you don’t get that instant gratification. It was just scary.”

“I just kept telling her to keep going,” her mom said.

Emergency medical services arrived about 3 minutes later, Brie said. Ray was rushed to a local hospital.

He was placed in a medically-induced coma and underwent hypothermia treatment in order to preserve brain activity, Lisa said.

Almost 24 hours after doctors had cooled him, Ray had an arrhythmia, which is the improper beating of the heart.

“They had to give him a defibrillator and shock him,” Brie said.

“He had literally died twice,” Lisa added. “Once, when EMTs (emergency medical technicians) arrived at home and shocked him after what Brie did, and once at the hospital. His doctor told him, ‘It wasn’t your time to go because you’ve died twice and you’ve come back.’

“They’re calling him a miracle.”

Ray remained in the intensive care unit for 10 days.

‘It’s just a complete blur to me’

Ray returned home weeks later, on April 28. He continues to recover and rebuild his strength.

“A lot of it … it’s just a complete blur to me,” Ray said. “I’m slowly starting to remember some of it, little by little. All I remember is waking up in the hospital with a couple of my friends being there — and that’s after I had been there a couple of weeks.”

Doctors told the Salloums that Ray’s cardiac incident was a fluke, and that the chances of it happening again are less than 1 percent.

“Basically, it was all brought on by the flu and pneumonia,” Ray said. “A combination of your body losing fluids and your blood thickening because you lost fluids. Your lungs being congested, putting pressure on the heart. I really don’t know.”

If it weren’t for Brie’s heroic efforts, Ray’s outcome could have been much different. EMTs at the scene and physicians at the hospital complimented her on how she performed CPR.

“She’s very modest and humble,” Lisa said. “How many kids give their dad their life?

“There are not many people in this world — even those that are in the medical field — who can say that they’ve saved someone’s life.”

Brie will attend the University of Iowa in the fall. She’s enrolled as pre-med. She doesn’t yet know if she wants to become a nurse practitioner who works in the emergency room, or if she wants to be a surgeon.

Brie said she is appreciative of the education she received at Valley, especially the CNA program.

“I’m really grateful it’s part of Valley,” Brie said. “I think it’s a good stepping stone for me to get my feet wet in the medical field. Before I was iffy. Now, I know I want to do this.”

Her dad appreciates the program, too.

“I’m grateful. I’m thankful,” he said. “It’s amazing because of the timeline: When she went into the CNA program, when she learned CPR, and when this happened to me. It’s just so all relatively close together.”



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CPR/First Aid Training – Now available online

Anyone can learn CPR, is your team ready to save a life?

UniFirst First Aid + Safety/UniFirst First Aid + Safety offers weekly CPR classes for companies and groups, our CPRAED, and First Aid training program will help employers meet OSHA and other federal and state regulatory requirements for training employees on how to respond and care for medical emergencies at work.

This 2-year certification course conforms to the latest AHA Guidelines Update for CPR and ECC, and the latest AHA and ARC Guidelines Update for First Aid.


Can we take the course online?

Absolutely! You can now take your class online, this allows for more flexibility for your schedule and also provides an alternative option to reduce in-person class time. After students pass the online portion we will come to your location to conduct “Skills Checks” which takes typically less than an hour for up to 10 students, we follow the CDC and AHA COVID-19 guidelines and will adhere to any specific requirements you may have beyond the CDC and AHA guidelines.

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3 types of bleeding and how to control them…

Stop the Bleed Month


May is National “Stop the Bleed Month” Here are some important tips to share

External blood is when blood leaves the body through any type of wound. First aid responders should be competent at dealing with major blood loss. There are broadly three different types of bleeding: arterial, venous and capillary.

How much blood do we have?
The average adult human as anywhere between 8 and 12 pints of blood depending on their body size.

Remember that children have less blood than adults, and as such cannot afford to lose the same amount – a baby only has around 1 pint of blood.

Stop the Bleed Month















With this type of bleeding, the blood is typically bright red to yellowish in color, due to the high degree of oxygenation. A wound to a major artery could result in blood ‘spurting’ in time with the heartbeat, several meters and the blood volume will rapidly reduce.

This blood is flowing from a damaged vein. As a result, it is blackish in color (due to the lack of oxygen it transports) and flows in a steady manner. Caution is still indicated: while the blood loss may not be arterial, it can still be quite substantial, and can occur with surprising speed without intervention.

Bleeding from capillaries occurs in all wounds. Although the flow may appear fast at first, blood loss is usually slight and is easily controlled. Bleeding from a capillary could be described as a ‘trickle’ of blood.

The key first aid treatment for all of these types of bleeding is direct pressure over the wound.


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