The process of boarding a plane can be hectic, but thanks to a quick-thinking TSA agent in New Jersey, a chaotic day didn’t have to turn into a tragic one.
Cecilia Morales had only been working at the Newark Liberty International Airport for two months when a nearby woman screamed for help. After picking up her 2-month-old son from his car seat carrier, she had discovered that he was no longer breathing.
Before getting her new job, Cecilia spent 10 years as an emergency medical technician (EMT), something that came in handy for this terrifying moment. First, she tried instructing the frantic mom from where she was standing, but it quickly became clear that someone else would have to step in.
“But she was so nervous, and I knew if I didn’t get over there, it wasn’t going to be a good outcome,” Cecilia said.
In an instant, her instincts and years of training kicked in — Cecilia jumped over the checkpoint conveyor belt rollers as fast as she could, knocking things over along the way and prompting assistance from a nearby co-worker.
The mom handed her baby over to Cecilia, who carefully placed him face down on her arm, making sure to keep his airway open, before carefully thumping him on the back. At first, there was no response. But with a second thump, the baby boy finally started to breathe again.
Soon after, the pediatric EMTs arrived to ensure the baby was okay. Thankfully, all he needed was some extra oxygen.
There’s no doubt that this precious baby’s mom is grateful beyond words for what Cecilia did, but she’s not the only one praising the quick-thinking TSA agent for being a hero.
“Two months on the job and she’s literally a life-saver,” Thomas Carter, TSA’s Federal Security Director for New Jersey said. “Officer Morales’ quick reaction and actions helped ensure that this family will have a happy holiday season. Her actions were inspiring.”
As for Cecilia herself, she’s just happy she was able to use her years of training to help.
“I saw the video afterward,” she said. “It was the first time I’ve ever seen myself in action, saving a life. It was mind-blowing to watch. I felt that my training and experience just took over.”
Watch Cecilia jump into action below and don’t forget to share.
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