Grateful mother thanks Gastonia police captain who saved choking baby at restaurant

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GASTONIA, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE)- A Gastonia mom is thanking a police captain who was in the right place at the right time, and was able to save the life of her choking baby.

“They dropped to their knees on the ground with the baby and said help me she’s not breathing,” Capt. Trent Conard.

A casual lunch at Olive Garden in Gastonia quickly took a turn when a one-year-old Ariya started choking on a breadstick. Her mom’s friend started screaming for help little did they know it was just a table over.

“There were waitresses in the restaurant crying and she was blue and limp and she wasn’t breathing, I know it was really tough on mom.”

Captain Conard says it’s been nearly two decades since he’s had to help with a choking infant, but he says he instantly remembered what to do and how to get results.

“It’s training that will always be with you. It’s been years since I’ve even looked at that but in a moment’s notice I knew what to do.”

“We’re both CPR certified and I just froze. Thankfully he has over 25 years of experience and knew what to do and how to get her going again,” Ariya’s mother Sierra told FOX 46.

“It was just a joy when i flipped that baby over and she was still limp and then she opened her eyes and let out a scream, that was just a great moment,” Capt. Conard said.

Since Gastonia police posted about the incident on Facebook hundreds of people have commented and thousands more shared.

“Every hours there’s more things on there. Its people like them and people like you that are why we put our lives on the line every day,” said Capt. Conard.

As for little Ariya, her mother says she was back smiling and laughing before they left the restaurant and was perfectly happy in the picture they took when they got home.

“She’s a special little girl and I don’t know what I would do without her,” Sierra said.

To Captain Conard, we say thank you for getting results and making sure Ariyra can continue to be the light of her family’s life.

“God has plans for that young lady and you never know she might be leading this country one day,” said Capt. Conard.

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