3-year-old Braeden was saved by a DeKalb County firefighter Friday afternoon after choking on a gummy fruit snack in the back seat of his mother's car.
Photo: Channel 2 Action News
Photo: Channel 2 Action News

DeKalb firefighter rescues choking 3-year-old 

A DeKalb County firefighter sprang into action Friday when a panicked mother burst into Brookhaven’s station No. 2 with a choking 3-year-old in her arms.

Eva Rich was driving with her son, Braeden, when he choked on a gummy fruit snack in the back seat and stopped breathing, Channel 2 Action News reported. 

“I just started screaming for help,” said Rich, who pulled into the station and ran inside. “I was just on the ground, praying to God that he would come back to me.”

That’s when DeKalb firefighter Jeff Bramlett came to the resuce, alternating between abdominal compressions and back blows to dislodge the snack and save Braeden’s life. 

After a few minutes, the toddler’s airway was cleared and he was able to speak again.

“That was the greatest thing,” Bramlett said. “He said, ‘You’re hurting me,’ which is great. I’ll take it.”

Rich said she was so thrilled her son was OK that she held him and wouldn’t let him go.

“And we promised to puree his food until he turns 18,” she joked.

She said she drives by the station each day and knew those firefighters were the only way she could save her son.

“Firefighters go from being part of your community to being your family in less than three minutes,” she said through tears. “I’m so indebted to what they do every day.”

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