Blackfeet CC Alumnus Saves Child from ChokingAug 15th, 2007 | By tcj | Category: 19-1: Tribal College Students Today, Tribal College News
Gaylene DuCharme of Blackfeet Community College (BCC, Browning, MT) declared, “We have a hero among us” in her email about Chico Reyes (Blackfeet) who saved a child’s life in January 2007.
Reyes’s heroic action was heralded in a letter printed in the Glacier Reporter. The Quinn family’s letter recounts how their 5-year-old son choked on chicken nuggets as they drove down a highway. Stopping on the side of the road, the child’s father attempted to help his son, while the mother frantically flagged down passersby as the boy lost consciousness.
Reyes, 25, a stranger to the family, stopped, quickly performed CPR and helped their son regain his consciousness.
The letter stated, “The hero held my child close to his body in such a comforting way, like he had done this many times before… To show our appreciation, we offered a variety of things, including money, which he refused.”
Reyes was on his way home from National Guard duty; he is a 2006 graduate of the BCC Early Childhood Education program and works as a tribal Head Start teacher.
The Quinns said, “His students and their parents and his coworkers are very lucky to have this outstanding person on a day-to-day basis. To his employers, award him for staying proficient in his duties, above and beyond. To the people of your community, congratulate him for a job well done. To his mother, you did a great job at raising him; thank you.
And finally, to you Chico Reyes, thank you for your services both civilian and military. You have our family’s support indefinitely. We will always remember you for what you did for us.”
Reyes credits both his military and early childhood education training with his CPR training. He states, “I’m always willing to help.”
Angela Johnson, BCC staff member, says, “Chico really is an inspiration and a role model for our students.” He is also a three-time martial arts champion who plans to become a child psychologist one day.