8-year-old hero saves choking classmate, thanks to skills taught by doctor dad

Yahoo Lifestyle
Makayla Annis, 7, was choking until her classmate Andrew Ramirez, 8, performed the Heimlich. (Photo: ABC)
Makayla Annis, 7, was choking until her classmate Andrew Ramirez, 8, performed the Heimlich. (Photo: ABC)

It’s no secret that kids are always watching their parents and picking up on their habits, a reality that often makes parents more mindful of what they say or do in front of their children. But for one 8-year-old boy, observing his father gave him knowledge that allowed him to save a friend’s life.

Andrew Ramirez sprang into action when he saw that his 7-year-old classmate Makayla Annis was choking during their class Valentine’s Day celebration. While enjoying treats on Wednesday, Makayla ended up with a gummy bear lodged in her throat. According to Andrew, he saw her turning pink and knew he had to do something, which led him to perform the Heimlich maneuver.

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“I saw Makayla choking, grabbing her neck, and I quickly gave her the Heimlich maneuver,” Ramirez explained to ABC News. 

The lifesaving tactic is something Andrew learned from his father, Dr. Rene Ramirez, who works in emergency medicine at a hospital in the Fresno, Calif., area. Dr. Ramirez heard about the incident from his 5-year-old daughter and believed that it might have been exaggerated. But from how Makayla, and her parents, reacted to Andrew’s deed, it’s evident that Andrew’s watching his dad ultimately saved a young girl’s life.

Andrew demonstrated for ABC News exactly what he did, teaching all the viewers a little something in the process as well. “If they’re choking, you get them right about right here, and you just push back like you’re giving them a really hard hug,” Andrew said.

“I was very surprised,” Makayla added. “This young gentleman helped me.”

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