When 14-year-old Lindsey Espinoza signed up for the fire-cadet class at Millsboro Middle School, who would have guessed she’d be saving her little sister just a few months later?
The Roxana Volunteer Fire Company started the fire-cadet class in autumn to introduce students to lifesaving skills and community service.
“Towards the beginning of the school year, we taught basic first-aid, puncture wounds, choking and hands-only CPR,” said RVFC Fire Chief Chris Uibel. “Little did we know that within two months, Lindsey would save her sister from choking.”
“She was at home, watching her 4-year-old sister. Her sister began to choke on a toy. Lindsey was able to quickly react, knowing everything that she had learned from our program. Through her lifesaving measure, she was able to help her sister from choking.”
Lindsey performed the Heimlich maneuver to dislodge the plastic toy from her sister’s throat.
“We’re so very proud of you — No. 1 for participating in the program, and No. 2, for actually applying what you’ve learned,” said Sussex County Councilman Rob Arlett. “It’s so very important, and one cannot put a price on that.”
“Trying to save a loved-one’s life is very difficult and very stressful,” said Gerald Brinson of the Delaware State EMS Association. “She took what she learned and applied it appropriately, and effectively saved her 4-year-old sister.”
Espinoza also received commendations from the Millsboro Volunteer Fire Company and Delaware State Fire Chief’s Association.
“I remember thinking, ‘This is the right thing to do for our community and our students,’” said Principal Renee Jerns of the program. Now she has living proof.