The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Breaking News

Local News

June 2, 2014

Saving the day for boy

Quick action revived choking first-grader

SHARPSVILLE — A first-grader who appeared to die for a few seconds on Thursday was up and running around the schoolyard with his classmates the next day.

“It’s a miracle,” Superintendent Brad Ferko said. “I saw the young man go limp. He was not breathing.”

Sharpsville Elementary School teacher Mike Anglin was in the cafeteria with Ferko during breakfast on what he thought would be another typical school day when a piercing scream shattered the early-morning calm.

“Help! He’s choking, he’s choking!”

Anglin and Ferko sprang into action as if they had done this together before.

Anglin was born and raised in Sharpsville and has been teaching in the district for nine years. Ferko was hired last summer after serving as superintendent for 10 years in another school district.

Anglin and Ferko took turns performing the Heimlich on the boy, but were relieved to see Sharpsville patrolman Brendan Gill and the school’s nurse, Debbie Hartwick, had arrived to help.

“It seemed like a drill,” Anglin said. “It was a collaborative effort that past training and past efforts put in place.”

The boy was eating an egg salad sandwich for breakfast and had a “big ball of egg” stuck in his esophagus, according to Gill.

“Ferko and Anglin were doing exactly what they were supposed to be doing when I came in,” Gill said.

Gill rolled the boy over and started cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

“He stopped breathing,” Gill said. “He didn’t have a pulse.”

After the fifth or sixth compression, the boy was revived.

“I saw the lights come on (in his eyes) and he took a decent gasp of air,” Gill said. “After a couple minutes in the ambulance he was up playing his GameBoy.”

Anglin and Hartwick were reluctant to share their story because they felt as if they were reliving it.

“It was so emotional,” Anglin, father of an almost one-year-old, said as he teared up. “I just kept seeing my daughter’s face.”

Hartwick, mother of two children in the district, said she was comforted when a fifth-grade teacher standing behind the team asked God to be with each person who worked to save the boy’s life.

“Everybody played a role,” Ferko said. “It was truly an amazing situation.”

Principal Matt Dieter followed the district’s emergency plan and placed the school on lock-down for about a half hour.

After the day’s events, the school coined the term, “Code White,” to alert teachers of a medical emergency. Gill said trauma training for teachers is in the works to make sure all school personnel know how to perform the life-saving techniques used by Anglin, Ferko, Gill and Hartwick.

During a very busy “field day” on school grounds Friday, there was a lot of hand-shaking and appreciation for those involved in saving the boy’s life.

“We love our students,” Hartwick said. “We’d do the same thing again in a heartbeat.”

Text Only
Local News
  • Doss: Public has right to know

    A major part of Farrell council’s work session Monday was spent deciding whether or not to inform the audience about an unofficial police proposal from the City of Sharon.

    July 30, 2014

  • Budget falling short despite tax hike

    Farrell residents may have seen an income tax increase this year, but the city isn’t seeing the extra dollars City Manager Michael Ceci budgeted for.

    July 30, 2014

  • oakwood graves 1 Resting together

    Visitors to Oakwood Cemetery would see many  familiar local names if they looked down the hillside to the left just inside the gate on Sharon’s North Oakland Avenue.

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • Police: Kids in car were OK

    The mother of two young children was drunk and passed out when police found them all in a car parked along a city street, Sharon police said.

    July 29, 2014

  • To talk – or not – about police

    The mysterious agenda item, “No. 10,” at Farrell’s council meeting Monday became the center of a heated workshop and business session.

    July 29, 2014

  • Community thanks its first-responders

    Sharpsville honored its emergency responders Sunday at an event that included Mertz Towers residents as special guests.

    July 28, 2014

  • Drilling boom challenges state inspectors

    The state’s 83 well inspectors face a daunting enough challenge keeping tabs on 120,000 active oil and gas wells that have been drilled over the last century.

    July 28, 2014

  • Kidds Mill Covered Bridge A span of time

    Four generations of the Cadman family have enjoyed the Kidds Mill Covered Bridge, which is in Pymatuning Township near where the family’s ancestral farm is located.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Intruder hurts woman, takes $5

    A home invasion in Hermitage Friday night sent an elderly woman to the hospital and netted the robber $5.

    July 27, 2014

  • national night out March against crime set for Aug. 5

    At the last Southwest Mercer County Regional Police Commission meeting, Chief Riley Smoot Jr. presented the number of incidents for each of the four communities in May.

    Farrell topped out at 819.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • high street trail Peaceful pathways

    History buffs and picnickers in the Shenango Valley won’t have to drive to Sharpsville to hang out at the old Erie Canal extension lock. They’ll soon have the option to walk or roll in on bicycles and even powered chairs to visit Canal Park near the outflow of Shenango Dam.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • balloonquest1 Balloon Quest celebrates 25 years

    Today is the final day of the 25th annual Western Pennsylvania Balloon Quest at Scotland Meadows Park.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • News briefs from July 26, 2014

    Man faces bomb threat charges

    June building tops $4 million in Hermitage

    July 26, 2014

  • Elderly man survives plane crash

    An elderly man survived wrecking his plane into a bank, then landing into a wetland, about 200 feet south of Runway 28 at Grove City Regional Airport in Springfield Township on Friday.

    July 26, 2014

  • Dontae Rashad Pinkins Man arrested for April gunfight

    Federal marshals and local police arrested Dontae Rashad Pinkins Thursday on a warrant accusing him of involvement in an April gunfight with another man in a Sharon alley.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo