Hatfield life-saver saves choking student

PUBLISHED: 13:18 20 March 2017 | UPDATED: 13:25 20 March 2017

McDonald's Galleria shift manager Kerry Hills.

McDonald's Galleria shift manager Kerry Hills.

Danny Loo Photography 2017

A quick-thinking Hatfield burger boss saved the life of a teenage student who collapsed and started choking in a car park.

Kerry Hills, a manager at McDonald’s, rushed to the Galleria car park when a colleague noticed a young woman had collapsed.

Thirty-nine-year old Kerry, who lives in Veritys, Hatfield, told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: “Her eyes had rolled back. She was not breathing.

“She was gasping. It was horrible.”

Fortunately, Kerry, who is trained in first aid, realised that the young woman had swallowed her tongue, and quickly reached down her throat to free it.

She thought she might have to revive her patient with CPR, and was greatly relieved to see her breathing restart naturally.

The young woman was able to tell Kerry her name, she was 19, and was studying at the University of Hertfordshire.

An ambulance soon arrived to take her to hospital.

The student’s mother told the Welwyn Hatfield Times her daughter had been diagnosed with epilepsy about a year ago, and had suffered another fit after arriving in hospital, but was later discharged.

She said: “She [Kerry] did a great job. My daughter is on new medication, and finding it really difficult.”

Kerry said: “It was frightening. Out of every 100 people, only two survive CPR. If nobody had got there within two or three minutes, God knows what would have happened.”

She found her emotions immediately after the rescue quite distressing, but felt happier after talking them through with her husband Darren.

Darren, who married Kerry in 2002, said: “I feel very proud of her. She is a strong person, and she did a great job.”

Kerry was brought up in Hatfield and attended Onslow St Audrey’s School, where her 12-year-old son Marty now studies.

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