Talon News - Good Local News

By Jacque Ritchie



October 13, 2017

Jacque Ritchie

Educational Assistant Cassandra Ferrer (l) saved Taylor Larson (R) from choking at Koogler Middle School.

The actions of a quick-thinking Koogler Middle School staff member averted a possible tragedy last week. The day started out as usual for 8th grade student Taylor Larsen. Larsen was enjoying a burger with friends in the lunchroom. "I was in a hurry you know because recess was starting," Larsen said. "I was just sitting there with my friends and I took a real big bite of this burger and then I just started choking. I couldn't breathe at all," Larsen said. "Nobody was helping me until Ms. Ferrer was there and she gave me the Heimlich two times." Larson said he was "pretty scared," and he credits Educational Assistant Cassandra Ferrer for saving his life, "I don't know what would have happened if she wasn't there, I could have died maybe. She's awesome."

Ferrer was matter-of-fact about the incident, "I was sitting at a table and I looked across the cafeteria and I saw one of the lunch ladies patting a young boy on the back and she was saying, 'He's choking! He's choking!' So I ran over there and performed the Heimlich maneuver twice. A big chunk of meat came flying out and we were all very relieved." Prior to performing the lifesaving act Ferrer saw that Larsen was in serious distress, "He was turning purple and was sweating," After the incident Ferrer said, "He was scared but thankful, he put his head on my shoulder and just cried." Larsen was taken from the lunch room to the nurses office. From there the student's father picked him up and they went to San Juan Regional Medical Center where he was treated and released. Ferrer said of Larsen's father, "He was very nice. He sent me a real big bouquet of flowers." While talking to the TALON in the Koogler lobby Larsen and Ferrer hugged each other fondly. "We have a special bond now, that means you are stuck with me forever," she said to her young charge. Of her actions on that day Ferrer said modestly, "I don't consider myself a hero, I feel like God just put me in the right place at the right time."


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