The mother of a four-week-old baby who came to within seconds of dying from a cardiac arrest has described her adoration for the school office staff that saved his life.
Lauren Hemingway, 27, was dropping her two older children off at Norristhorpe Junior and Infant School in Liversedge when she noticed blood in the mouth of newborn Teddy, who had earlier been coughing and crying in his car seat.
Initially believing she had caught him on a coat zip, Lauren was horrified to see blood pouring from the month-old’s nose and mouth.
Teddy, unable to swallow the blood, began choking and it was later discovered that he was suffering a cardiac arrest.
“It was unlike anything you could ever even begin to imagine,” Lauren said, “I just remember looking down and seeing all this blood coming out of his mouth. I didn’t know what was happening or what to do. It was just horrific.”
Locked in panic, Lauren sought the help of staff at the school reception.
“It’s all a blur from there but they were just amazing in how calm they were and how quickly they acted.
“There was a whole room of them working together to help Teddy. I was just beside myself but they called an ambulance and kept his heart going.
“I just cannot begin to thank them enough for what they did for him. If it hadn’t been for them Teddy wouldn’t be alive today, there’s no doubt about that I don’t think.”
The four Norristhorpe Junior and Infant School staff; Gillian Green, Hannah Horsley, Jackie Kelly and Claire Merritt, were able to fall back on training provided to them by the school in reacting to the emergency.
Some of the staff are receiving help dealing with the trauma of what happened.
Hannah said: “Once our training kicked in we all worked as a team and it was only afterwards the enormity of what happened hit us.”
Three months on from the near-tragedy, Mum Lauren says that Teddy is doing well and that doctors have been impressed at his recovery after two days of life in a Pinderfields Hospital intensive care unit.
“We’re all absolutely delighted that he’s thriving,” said Gillian, “and we all love to have a cuddle when Mum brings him in for a visit.”
Doctors are unable to pinpoint the exact cause of the cardiac arrest, although it is believed it may have been caused by a blockage of the airwaves by mucus falling down Teddy’s throat.
Lauren, who has suffered from anxiety since that day, has nominated the four ladies for a ‘Yorkshire Choice’ award, which relies on votes from the public.
Votes can be cast free of charge by visiting the website at www.yorkshirechoiceawards.co.uk/votehere.