Paramedic student saves man from choking right before EMT internship interview

(INSIDE EDITION) A California student training to be a paramedic rescued a choking man at a coffee shop on his way to an interview for a job in the field.

Will Stewart, 23, a Sacramento State student, told that he was with a group of other paramedic students preparing to interview for an internship as a part of their curriculum.

To calm their nerves, they popped into a coffee shop across the street.

“We were sitting there, drinking our coffee, when we heard him cough once,” Stewart said. “I looked over and he was just kind of leaning against his table. I thought, ‘He’s probably just coughing, breathed in some coffee or something.'”

Stewart said he then heard another cough, but was alarmed when he heard the man fall silent.

“He was kind of just holding his chest and walking around in circles,” he explained. “I got kind of worried so I went over there, tapped him on the shoulder. He stuck his arms straight up so I went and did the Heimlich maneuver.”

The student, who is also a volunteer firefighter, explained he learned the warning signs and how to react from his classes.

“He wasn’t doing the traditional [signals], but he wasn’t moving any air so that’s what cued me to go over there and check on him,” Stewart said.

The man gave a thumbs-up to show he was doing fine, and Stewart said he promptly returned to his group, not wanting to draw any attention to what happened.

Moments later, he left his group and went to the interview.

“I started getting the shakes just from nerves and adrenaline,” he said.

Although Stewart never mentioned the good deed he performed just minutes before that demonstrated his skill in the field, he landed the internship.

“I still feel pretty good about it,” Stewart said. “It gives me a tingly feeling in my chest, like ‘Hey, I helped someone.’” provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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