A teen in Bay City, Michigan, was recognized Thursday for taking swift action when someone was in desperate need of help.
Officials honored 19-year-old Lillian Flanders, who credits her high school CPR training for helping her know exactly what to do on December 27 at the Doubletree Hotel, according to WNEM.
The moment she found her coworker, Rusty Publow, slumped over his desk and realized he was unresponsive, she took action to save his life.
She moved him onto the floor, then started performing CPR, which kept the man stable until emergency crews arrived to take over the process.
Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is described as a “lifesaving procedure performed when the heart stops beating. Immediate CPR can double or triple chances of survival after cardiac arrest,” the American Heart Association’s website read.
The procedure is important because “Keeping the blood flow active – even partially – extends the opportunity for a successful resuscitation once trained medical staff arrive on site,” the association continued.
In a social media post on Thursday, the Bay County CrimeStoppers praised the young woman, writing, “Great job, Lillian Flanders!! You are a hero!”
The young rescuer said it has been a few years since she went through the training course but was relieved it came back to her when she saw the man in need, adding, “I got right to it.”
A photo shows the young woman standing next to her coworker as their loved ones gather around them:
Posted by Kimberly Palmer Publow on Saturday, February 18, 2023
Shawn McAteer, the senior vice president and global head of Doubletree by Hilton, said what everyone else was thinking about her actions.
“We are in awe of you, we are in awe of what you have done. We are grateful for your act and I’m sure Rusty is really grateful,” he commented.
The young woman was presented with awards, a key to the city, and gifts in recognition of her efforts.
“I owe my life to Lillian. If it weren’t for her and her quick reaction, and her just jumping in … she saved my life,” Publow noted.
Social media users also expressed their joy over the outcome, one person writing, “What a wonderful sight! So, Happy to see Rusty back to good health!”