While eating lunch June 5 at his home in Watertown, 5-year old Kadin Long choked on his chicken nuggets. He ran to his mother, Unique, who alerted her wife, Amber Long, who encouraged Kadin to try to dislodge the food by coughing.
When she realized that coughing wasn’t going to work, Amber started performing abdominal thrusts. After the third abdominal thrust, Kadin started spitting up blood and frothing at the mouth. He started to turn blue and lost consciousness.
Amber told Unique to call 911. Amber kept yelling, “Kadin, Kadin . . . wake up! Stay awake!” While Unique was on the phone with the 911 operator, Amber carried Kadin outside to their porch. Amber called to her neighbor across the street, Christine Gardner. Christine, a Certified Nursing Assistant, ran across the street and also attempted abdominal thrusts, but they were unsuccessful.
The 911 operator directed the women to start CPR. Amber performed the rescue breaths, while Christine did the chest compressions. On the last breath of the first round of breaths, Kadin vomited blood and the piece of nugget. Amber, a Licensed Practical Nurse, was convinced her son was going to die in her arms.
“Doing CPR on an adult – and adult you don’t know – is one thing,” Amber said. “But doing it on your own child is something totally different. It turns your whole world around in an instant.”
Amber feels that everyone, especially those with children, should take it upon themselves to become certified in First Aid and CPR. Both Amber and Unique were re-certified by the American Red Cross in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED in April 2013 – two months before Kadin’s incident.
“You train for a reason. You have the skills, and you can use those skills to save someone’s life,” Amber said. “And that someone could be your own child.”
To sign up or learn more about lifesaving classes offered by the American Red Cross, visit Take a Class.