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Posted on: February 13, 2019 at 9:37 pm
Last updated: February 18, 2019 at 9:42 pm

“A hero is someone who, in spite of weakness, doubt or not always knowing the answers, goes ahead and overcomes anyway.” – Christopher Reeve 

It was a terrifying ordeal for Alyssa Bostic when she got buried alive under a collapsed sand cave at the beach. Just over two years ago, a fun day at the Marina Dunes, California turned into a near-death experience for the 5-year-old girl. Thankfully, a young hero was close by when it happened. Then, 11-year-old Connor Fitz-Gerald dug her up and swung into action, and even performing CPR. He saved the girl’s life before their parents got to the scene and called for help.

Little Alyssa thought the sand cave would hold up

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Unfortunately, it collapsed while she was trying to crawl into it. As reported by KSBW 8, Alyssa, Connor and some other kids were digging large caves in the sand [1]. Alyssa was small enough to fit into one of the caves, so she decided to crawl in. That was when it came crashing down, burying her completely. She couldn’t breathe for several minutes and she passed out.

There were no parents or adults around. The closest adults were about a quarter-mile away. Connor immediately came to her rescue. He managed to dig her up and perform CPR, while the other kids ran to get help.

She was buried right there. I saw her bag and I started digging up here ‘cause that’s where her head is,” Connor explained at the scene of the incident. “She was kinda like laying right here. The girls came running up, so I picked her up, dragged her a little bit off the hill, like over there, and I started doing CPR,” he said as he pointed to the spots he described.

Connor explained that Alyssa had sand in her eyes and mouth, and her body was limp as he carried her out. Connor knew that he had to resuscitate her rather than wait for her to wake up on her own. He learned CPR from watching the American television series, NCIS. Fortunately, Connor resuscitated the girl’s and she was able to breathe again. Whether Connor correctly performed CPR remains to be seen, but his heart was in the right place, and he was able to save Alyssa.

Connor didn’t let doubt or fear get a hold of him

Many kids in Connor’s position would have balked from fear or uncertainty. Connor rose to the situation and did what he knew was best, casting all doubt aside. His father is proud of his bravery and intellect. Mr. Fitz-Gerald ran over to help Connor while Alyssa’s father called 911. The paramedics arrived minutes later, and they confirmed that Connor had been Alyssa’s saving grace.

Alyssa has recovered completely now, saying she feels “good” after the traumatic incident.

Mayor of Marina, Bruce Delgado got wind of the heroic courage Connor had displayed at the beach. Just like everyone else, he was impressed by such bravery and confidence. The Mayor revealed that Connor would be honored for his heroism at the next council meeting. The young Superman deserves it.

It’s necessary to teach kids first aid skills

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Once a child is old enough to recognize the urgency of a situation and recall procedures, they can be taught First Aid skills. Connor may have indirectly learned CPR, which could have played a major role in saving little Alyssa. Accidents are bound to occur where and when kids play.

All first aid skills are necessary, but three of the most important to teach kids are cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, and abdominal thrusts. Children as young as 9 years old are thought to be able to learn CPR procedures, however, their physical strength may limit them.

CPR stimulates the heart into resuming the pumping of blood, circulating oxygen to the brain. Mouth-to-mouth is an artificial ventilation technique for blowing air into the lungs. These two techniques are performed when a person is unconscious, unable to breathe or has water in the lungs. Abdominal thrusts are performed when a person is choking and can’t cough up the obstructing item, usually food morsels.

It’s essential that kids and adults alike have these skills at the tips of their fingers. Every second counts in situations of emergency. Alyssa may not have survived the ordeal if Connor had not been quick to respond. Thankfully, the hero in him had burst forth at that moment. He truly deserves to be honored.

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Jordan Nisbet
Staff Writer
Writer at the Hearty Soul.

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