A quick-thinking Transportation Security Administration officer last week saved a woman’s life after she began showing signs of choking while on a checkpoint line at John F. Kennedy International Airport.
According to an agency spokeswoman, TSA Supervisory Behavior Detection Officer Glenn Davis was working at a checkpoint in Terminal 1 when he noticed a commotion in the middle of the line. After he observed a woman who appeared to be choking on something, Davis attempted to dislodge the item from the traveler’s throat using the Heimlich maneuver, but it didn’t work. Her husband indicated that his wife had been eating a donut, which got stuck in her throat.
Seconds later, the woman stopped breathing and went limp. Davis then lowered her to the floor and began to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
“The woman started to turn blue, she had no pulse,” said Davis, who also is a 13-year veteran volunteer firefighter with the Manorville Fire Department on Long Island. “We tried CPR. I started with chest compressions and I instructed her husband to pinch her nose and breathe into her mouth.”
Another TSA officer called 911 and contacted the Port Authority Police.
“We worked on her for about five minutes,” Davis recalled, “finally, she started to cough.”
As the woman began to breathe again, “I monitored her and…the color came back to her face,” said Davis, a Suffolk County resident who has worked for TSA since 2005.
After the woman regained consciousness, Davis said he wanted to check her alert level. He asked her what type of donut she had been eating.
“As she was telling me about the donut, I began to laugh,” Davis said. The woman told him she was serious about the type of donut she was eating.
“I looked at her and told her I knew she was serious,” Davis recalled. “I was just glad she was alive and could tell me about it.”
By Forum Staff