Boy saves mom after Heimlich lesson at school

March 23, 2011 3:38:10 AM PDT
Thanks to an important lesson at school, a 12-year-old boy in New Jersey is being hailed as a hero for saving his mother's life.

Westwood middle school student Ramin Eeschaghi learned the Heimlich maneuver in his health class, then performed it on his mother later that night, saving her from choking on almonds.

"I did what I had to do," he said. "I would do it a million other times if I had to.

While Ramin's grandmother and younger sister screamed, he stayed calm.

It was a good thing he did, because his mother's face was turning blue.

"I was so weak, my eyes were getting blurry," Maryam Jahansouz said. "I could hear them in the background but not clearly."

As luck would have it, Ramin had learned how to do the Heimlich that very morning in Gina Vintalori's health class.

"It does seem like fate, like divine intervention in some way," Vintalore said.

Nine hours after practicing the technique in class, Ramin performed it perfectly.

It took five thrusts, he said, but the almonds did finally pop out, and Maryam could breathe again.

"Ramin was the only one who got his act together," she said. "I'm very proud of him, he did it all himself."

Ramin called 911, but by the time paramedics arrived, he had already saved his mother.

"They were amazed at what a kid my age could do," he said. "I was pretty amazed."

Vintalori said some colleagues questioned whether sixth graders were too young to learn the Heimlich. No one is doubting this lesson anymore.

"If I hadn't learned it, I could have done it, but not as well as I did," Eshaghi said.

Eshaghi says he'd like to be a brain surgeon when he grows up, because he likes to help people.

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