A police officer in Nevada saved a 3-year-old boy who was choking on a piece of candy, a dramatic rescue that was recorded on the officer's body camera.
The rescue happened last week at Green Valley Grocery in Mesquite, Nevada.
Damian Valencia couldn’t breathe. He was semiconscious, choking on a Jawbreaker candy that he received at a birthday party. The boy’s parents rushed into the store with their son.
Ray Sanchez, a cashier, called 911.
Off-duty officer Quinn Averett was less than a block away when the call came in. Averett raced into the store, turned the boy upside down over his knee and began a kind of reverse-Heimlich maneuver, with the officer’s body camera capturing the moment the Jawbreaker popped free. Days later, an emotional reunion occurred at the police station, with the boy’s family stopping by to thank the man who saved Damian’s life.
“When I saw him, I just started crying,” the boy’s mother, Mariana Cardiel, said.
Averett says he became emotional, too.
“I cried a little bit because it really touched me, because I have children of my own,” he said.
Another reunion is set for January, when Mesquite’s police department and city council will honor the officer with an award. The boy’s family plans to attend the ceremony.
“It was a good ending, you know, a happy ending,” Cardiel said. “My son’s still with me.”