Local student named Heartsafe HeroPublished 2:13pm Thursday, June 7, 2012
The moment that Cain Cradolph, 16, of Jones, heard his North Pointe Center classmate, Justin Meachum, 18, coughing, he sprung into action. Thanks to imperative CPR and Heimlich maneuver training he had received just two days prior, Cradolph saved Meachum’s life.
“I was just sitting down working when I walked up behind him (Meachum) and realized he was choking,” Cradolph said Thursday. “He was sitting down, so I had him stand up and I just started the Heimlich.”
Though Cradolph said he was scared at the time, it all happened in a blur and before he knew it, Meachum’s piece of hard candy was dislodged from his throat.
Members of Borgess Lee Memorial Hospital in Dowagiac, North Pointe Center School and Cradolph’s family gathered Thursday morning to award him the Heartsafe Hero Award through the Heartsafe Community Education Program. It was the instruction Cradolph and his classmates received just days earlier through the program that helped save Meachum’s life.
“They all did such an excellent job,” Christine Van Husan, the class’ CPR instructor, said. “Because it was fresh in Cain’s mind, he helped save a life.”
Cradolph’s mother, Deborah, said she was incredibly proud of her son and his quick action.
“It’s especially great that he was recognized for this,” Deborah said. “It’s rare to see this recognition.”
Borgess Lee Memorial Hospital Administrator Joy Strand attended the ceremony, stating how proud she was of Cradolph.
“It makes me proud to be apart of Borgess Lee,” Strand said. “That our program has helped a community member saves someone’s life is good to see.”
Chief Nursing Officer Katie Brick said that this instance was also an amazing tribute to the individual and the program.
“For someone at that age to save a life, there’s nothing else like it in the world,” Brick said.
Cradolph, who has just one more year before graduation from North Pointe, said he was happy to have his family and classmates there with him.
“I’m proud of myself,” Cradolph said. “I’d do more of it if I could.”