'Everything went just like it needed to go'

Rescuers honored for saving 12-year-old swimmer

Jerry Davis had never performed CPR before June 16.

He had to use his training to help resuscitate one of the young swimmers he coaches.

And Tuesday night, he and two others who leapt into quick action were honored for their heroics before the Craig City Council.

Davis is the assistant coach of the Craig Sea Sharks, which includes competitors between the ages of 5 and 18.

On June 16, a 12-year-old team member who was attempting to swim two lengths of the 25-meter pool without coming up for air sank to the bottom of the pool's deep end. Coach Marin Campbell was in the water nearby and she rushed to the boy's aid.

Campbell pulled the boy to the surface and pulled him to the edge of the pool. Then Campbell, Davis and Wendy Humburg started CPR on the boy, who was not breathing and had no pulse.

Campbell tilted the boy's head and opened his airway. After three breaths by Davis, and 15 chest compressions by Humburg, the boy regained consciousness and began coughing.

"Everything went just like it needed to go," Davis said.

The boy was talking even before he was transported to the hospital, Davis said.

And on his way out of the room on a gurney, he raised a hand and waived to Campbell.

That's when she started crying. Until then, her thoughts had been focused on what to do next. But once he was in the care of the emergency medical technicians, "I fell apart," Campbell said, describing the moment as happy and sad, too.

After years of CPR training, none of the rescuers had used it before.

"Between the three of us, we probably have 25 years of CPR training and never had to use it," Campbell said.

"It was so fortunate I was right there," Campbell said. "I couldn't have been any closer."

Campbell was glad Humburg was present because CPR was easier with the three-person team. Humburg had stayed at the pool for a few minutes after dropping off her child at swim practice.

Campbell said the boy was an extremely strong swimmer who was accustomed to the feat he was attempting.

The boy competes in the backstroke and freestyle.

"He's doing really well this year," Campbell said. "He already qualified for the summer championships."

The coach said the swimmer is eager to get back in the water.

The boy's family declined to comment on the incident.

Davis, Campbell and Humberg earned the Craig Police Department's "Lifesaver" award and each were presented with a certificate Tuesday night.

"We feel they deserve recognition for the swift action they took in reviving this young person," Craig Police Chief Walt Vanatta said.

Jeremy Browning can be reached at 824-7031 or jbrowning@craigdailypress.com

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