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Natick custodian, cafeteria worker save student from choking

A custodian and cafeteria worker who work for Natick Public Schools in Natick, Massachusetts, are being hailed as heroes after they saved an elementary student who was choking on his lunch, according to school officials.Superintendent Anna Nolin said the incident happened Tuesday afternoon at Memorial Elementary School.Mark Plant, the school’s head custodian, and Emily DeOliveira, a cafeteria worker, quickly jumped into action when they saw the boy choking. They took turns performing the Heimlich maneuver and were able to dislodge the food that was stuck in the student’s throat.”I just acted,” Plant said. “I just remember telling him to breathe and spit it up, and try to encourage him to get whatever was lodged in out.””It’s something that’s in the backs of our mind, especially walking around, making sure that every student is eating and safe,” DeOliveira said. “That’s our No. 1 priority.”Memorial Elementary Principal Robin Welch said the quick thinking and actions of Plant and DeOliveira made it possible for the student to return home Tuesday evening.”They saved a life,” Welch said. “Granted, we don’t know if the child would have passed, but we know that he didn’t because of their actions.””I’m just glad he’s OK,” Plant said. “It couldn’t have worked out any better. She started it, I finished it, and the result is exactly what we hoped for.”Welch said he spoke with the student’s parents, who told the principal that their son was doing fine and that he is excited to return to school on Wednesday.

A custodian and cafeteria worker who work for Natick Public Schools in Natick, Massachusetts, are being hailed as heroes after they saved an elementary student who was choking on his lunch, according to school officials.

Superintendent Anna Nolin said the incident happened Tuesday afternoon at Memorial Elementary School.

Mark Plant, the school’s head custodian, and Emily DeOliveira, a cafeteria worker, quickly jumped into action when they saw the boy choking. They took turns performing the Heimlich maneuver and were able to dislodge the food that was stuck in the student’s throat.

“I just acted,” Plant said. “I just remember telling him to breathe and spit it up, and try to encourage him to get whatever was lodged in out.”

“It’s something that’s in the backs of our mind, especially walking around, making sure that every student is eating and safe,” DeOliveira said. “That’s our No. 1 priority.”

Memorial Elementary Principal Robin Welch said the quick thinking and actions of Plant and DeOliveira made it possible for the student to return home Tuesday evening.

“They saved a life,” Welch said. “Granted, we don’t know if the child would have passed, but we know that he didn’t because of their actions.”

“I’m just glad he’s OK,” Plant said. “It couldn’t have worked out any better. She started it, I finished it, and the result is exactly what we hoped for.”

Welch said he spoke with the student’s parents, who told the principal that their son was doing fine and that he is excited to return to school on Wednesday.

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