A dad has been called heroic after he saved a woman’s life as she was choking on food while out for a meal at an Indian restaurant.
Charlie Butler, 29, was out for dinner in Sunderland and was sitting at a nearby table to the woman when he heard what he initially thought was an altercation occurring.
But when he realised it was more serious, Charlie rushed over to Trish Malin as he is first aid trained.
Trish was panicking along with her friends at the table, so Charlie, after introducing himself, performed abdominal thrusts on her. The third thrust dislodged the blockage to her throat.
Charlie’s heroics didn’t go unnoticed by Trish’s husband and indeed the restaurant owners, who bought him and his friends a round of drinks to say thank you, according to the Newcastle Chronicle.
Charlie, who lives with his partner Emma and six-month-old daughter Amelia in Roker, Sunderland, said: “It was so scary but also humbling.
“I’ve been thinking about it none stop since it happened. It just shows how being first aid trained can be the difference in saving somebody’s life.
“She could have, and probably would have, died. I am proud of myself.”
The operations manager was with a group of friends and hadn’t even had a sip from his first beer of the night when he realised something was going on at Trish’s table.
He continued: “There were two men and two women and one of the women was frantically hitting the other on the back.
“I went over and there were tears rolling down the face of the woman. Her face was getting redder and redder. Her friend was crying and shouting “please help her”.
“People were around but nobody was doing anything. I went up to the woman and asked if she could breath and she shook her head. I then quickly introduced myself and told her I was first aid trained.
“I told her “I’m going to put my arms around you and do abdominal thrusts, which I’ll do on the count of three”.
“I then started doing the thrusts and whatever was in her throat came out after the third one.
“To hear her then take a breath was such a relief. She sat down and just cried.”
Afterwards, Charlie immediately went back to his friends before going outside to calm himself down and ring his partner.
Charlie went on: “Five minutes later, they came over and thanked me and the woman’s husband bought us a round of beers. The restaurant owner did too.
“It was all so surreal. The whole thing happened in 15 to 20 seconds, from realising she was choking to getting what was stuck out.
“It just shows that first aid training costs pennies but it really can save somebody’s life.”
Trish, meanwhile, aged 58 and also from Sunderland, naturally was full of praise for her saviour.
“Thank God he was in Goa at the time. He is a hero in my eyes and I can’t thank him enough.
“To tell you the truth, I can’t remember much about what happened at the time. I would not be here if it had not been for Charlie.”