It’s Hispanic Heritage month, and we are highlighting some of the amazing people in our community who help the Red Cross fulfill its mission of preventing and alleviating human suffering in the face of emergencies.
Dora is a Red Cross volunteer who lives in Boulder. Read her story of how she decided to get involved.
It happened over 30 years ago. It was a beautiful summer family beach outing at Galveston, Texas. And from one minute to another, a child, Mary Jane, went missing from our group. We all set out to look for her and found her at the bottom of a sand slop that had accumulated water. Her father was the first to find her. When we heard the cries of the horrified father, we all ran to him to find him hugging his child, crying.
All of a sudden a stranger came along and reached for the little girl. The father let go and the stranger started CPR. Her 8-year-old was lifeless. Mary Jane had foam coming out of her mouth and her eyes were turned back. All you could only see were the whites of her eyes. The little girl looked dead. But the man who took her and started CPR, didn’t give up and continued CPR until the ambulance arrived and took her to the hospital.
At the hospital she was treated and released days later. Today Mary Jane is now in her 40s. I was very young at that time myself, but I never forgot about the man who happened to be taking a walk on the beach that day, and how he reached over to the father, holding his lifeless child. My name is Dora. I am Mary Jane’s aunt and I became an American Red Cross CPR Instructor because I Believe CPR saves lives.
We never found out the identity of this man or where he came from. He is often mentioned in our family prayers, where ever he is. Was he trained at the American Red Cross? I may never know but I do know that timing is everything and that a stranger was at the right place at the right time. I also know that CPR does work. It's important that we learn the facts about CPR and understand that time means survival.
Wherever this man may be I thank him. He changed my life and the lives of my family.
Read Dora’s story en español by visiting www.cruzrojaamericana.org.