Meath woman looking for 'superhero' who saved her life with Heimlich manoeuvre

Meath woman looking for 'superhero' who saved her life with Heimlich manoeuvre
Sandra McCabe

A grandmother says she is alive today “because a Superhero saved my life,” and she would love to thank her in person.

Sandra McCabe was having lunch with her family yesterday when a piece of beef got stuck in her throat.

A woman she never met before came over and performed the Heimlich manoeuvre and dislodged the beef so Sandra could breathe again.

"I thought to myself I am going to die here. I had stood up and was trying to catch my breath. As far as I am concerned she saved my life."

Sandra, from Trim, Co Meath had gone with her mother Eileen, her sister Mary and her daughter Becky as well as her cousin Raymond for lunch in the Ardboyne Hotel in Navan.

She had just started to eat her beef meal when “I don’t know if the beef slipped down or I swallowed it, but I went Oh God to myself because it would not go down or come up and I thought my throat is blocked.”

Sandra took a sip of water but it would not go down and instead stayed in her mouth.

“I ended up spitting the water onto the floor and I stood up and I was hitting myself in my chest.”

Her cousin and her sister both attempted to do the Heimlich manoeuvre without success.

Sandra said, “then this woman came out of nowhere. She flew over to me and said ‘don’t panic, don’t panic’.”

The woman was smaller than Sandra, who is tall, and “she did it real gently at first but the food didn’t move. She did it again and it slightly moved and she did it again and it was gone, it went down rather than up.”

I could actually hear myself whistle and I thought I am going to die here and my mother, who only recently lost my dad, who died from a choking disorder, was standing looking at me.

Sandra said that it was “the worst sensation I have ever had. Literally nothing was going down, either water or saliva. I couldn’t even swallow, I did not have that sensation to swallow.”

Staff in the hotel, including the manager, also went to help her and then to check on her but what Sandra really wants to do is thank “my Superhero who saved my life, in person.”

“I was in such shock I didn’t ask her name and she came back over to me to check on me.”

She has sore shoulder today but other than that Sandra is perfectly fine.

“As far as I am concerned she saved my life. She must have had medical training because she was really calm and she calmed me down and my mother.”

“She walked away and I thought there is that Superhero and I never got her name. I want to thank her from the bottom of my heart.”

So if you are the woman who had lunch in the Ardboyne Hotel, Navan yesterday, Sandra McCabe would love to hear from you on sanmccabe@gmail.com.

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