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Plainfield East HS teacher saves co-worker from choking

(from left) Maureen Beadleston, a special education teaching assistant at Plainfield East High School, Kristin Schmitt, PEHS special education teacher, Mary Beth Lindemann and Rosalie Isherwood both registered nurses at PEHS pose in front of the PEHS mural on Thursday, May 24, 2018. Lindemann, Isherwood and Beadleston praised Schmitt’s calm demeanor when she gave the Heimlich maneuver and saved Beadleston’s life as she was choking.   Plainfield East High School special education teaching assistant Maureen Beadleston believes angels walk on earth.

One such angel is special education teacher Kristin Schmitt, who saved Beadleston’s life on Monday, May 21, 2018.

Beadleston was eating lunch at her desk when a piece of food lodged in her throat.

“I couldn’t breathe,” she said. “I couldn’t make a sound to get anyone’s attention.”

Schmitt was on the other side of the office. She heard coughing and banging on a desk.

She ran toward the noise and found Beadleston choking.

“I’ve seen the Heimlich maneuver done, I’ve learned how to do it, so I thought, I guess I’m going to see if we can make this work,” Schmitt said.

After a few thrusts Beadleston started to breathe again, said PEHS registered nurses Rosalie Isherwood and Mary Beth Lindemann.

There was a chance that the nurses would have had to perform CPR on Beadleston if Schmitt had not intervened, said Isherwood.

Schmitt is usually in class during that time of day but Monday she had a work day and was in the office when Beadleston began choking.

“Angels walk among us and Kristin is my angel,” said Beadleston.

Beadleston, Isherwood and Lindemann praised Schmitt for her calm demeanor and lifesaving action.

“I’m so impressed that Kristin, in a split second, made that decision to help another person, it is just amazing,” said Isherwood.

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