AHA News: He went from troubleshooting a CPR training app to using CPR to save his 2-year-old son
FRIDAY, June 10, 2022 (American Heart Association News) — Strapped into the driver’s seat while on his way to a Dallas hospital, Tyler Morgan put his phone’s video camera into selfie mode and broke the record.
Glancing his reddened eyes towards the lens, he began to speak.
“So, my, my son almost…just…drowned.” Or he drowned. He almost died. »
The Morgans were at a social gathering when 2-year-old Beckham saw a foam noodle floating in an Olympic-sized swimming pool. Due to lightning, the swimming pool was prohibited. But Beckham has always been both fearless and drawn to the water. So, without anyone watching, this boy whose swim training ended at 5 months old due to the COVID-19 pandemic, walked in after that noodle.
He descended a few stairs and held out his hand. Instead, his little hands pushed him away. Beckham again chased the noodle, but this time in deeper water than he could handle.
A teenager was the first to notice Beckham floating face down. She jumped in, pulled him out, and placed him on his back along the edge of the pool. His body was lifeless. Her face was purple. She and two teenagers started screaming.
About 30 feet away, Tyler heard the din to his right. He turned to her. Because of the tables and the people in the way, all he could see was a pair of tiny legs wearing a black bathing suit with a thin green-yellow stripe down the side and black sandals.
Recognizing those trunks and sandals, Tyler rushed over.
“Nobody knew what to do,” he told the camera, shaking his head slightly and shrugging.
With a bigger nod and a shrug, he added, “A little bit of me included.”
Yet when Tyler reached Beckham, he knew exactly What to do.
Tyler pointed at someone and told them to call 911, then he started thrusting hard and fast in the center of his son’s chest. After a series of compressions, Tyler paused to check if Beckham was breathing. He was not. So Tyler started giving rescue breaths between compressions.
Rescue breaths are especially vital during CPR in children whose heart has stopped, as the root cause is usually respiratory. Tyler continued to alternate breaths and compressions for about 20 seconds. Then Beckham coughed.
Although he was breathing again, Beckham remained unresponsive. So Tyler used a single knuckle to rub the boy’s sternum. With that jolt, Beckham began to cry loudly and breathe deeply.
By the time an ambulance arrived, Beckham was hugged by his mother, Jessica Morgan. Once paramedics took over to attend to the boy, a woman grabbed Tyler and said, “You did it, dad!” I’m a nurse and I’ve seen it all. I couldn’t have done better. »
Of all the pieces that fell into place to save Beckham’s life, the most remarkable is how and why Tyler knew what to do.
Tyler is vice president of engineering for Trivie, a company that has gone from building the best-selling game in an app store to working with companies on their own training programs. Trivie applies its neuroscience-based trivia contests to these programs so that critical information is remembered longer. Over the past few years, Trivie has worked with the American Heart Association to develop a Knowledge Booster app that, as the name suggests, provides training reinforcement for CPR and other life skills. It was launched in January.
Following a major app update in March, Tyler went through the app to make sure everything looked and worked well. On Saturday, April 9, he spent so much time working on it that he promised his family that he would leave on Sunday, in part to join them at that pool party.
As part of his assessment, Tyler went through each screen several times. This meant revisiting each question even more often. His only goal was to make the application work perfectly. At least he thought that was his only goal.
“Because of the superficial knowledge I gained from using this app – even during testing – I knew enough to…to…save his life,” Tyler said in the video. , his voice breaking on those last words. Then he sniffled, grimaced, turned back to the road and put his hand over his mouth as he tried to regain his composure.
Every year, more than 350,000 people in the United States go into cardiac arrest outside of a hospital. About 90% die.
The odds are dire in part because of the rarity of those people receiving bystander CPR: only about 40%. When CPR is performed immediately, survival is up to three times more likely.
Statistics, however, can only go so far in convincing people to learn CPR. Far more compelling is a story about how things can turn out. This story is even more gripping thanks to the video which allows everyone to see and hear the emotions of this rescue dad in the moments following the resuscitation of his son and before learning his prognosis.
On the way to the hospital, Tyler called its CEO, Lawrence Schwartz.
He was forced to do this because Schwartz — a stroke survivor who credits the AHA for helping his recovery — sparked the chain of events that led Tyler to use CPR to save his son.
“Take a video of what you did and how you did it,” Schwartz told Tyler. “It could help save another life.”
Shortly after finishing the video, Tyler arrived at the hospital. In the ER, he found Beckham sitting up in bed, smiling broadly and wearing a superhero mask and red cape.
Right away, Tyler knew that Beckham was still Beckham, still the precocious child he had always been.
Beckham spent that night in the hospital simply for observation. The next day, his pediatrician gave him a certificate of good health.
The emotional heart of this story is the dual roles played by Tyler.
He is a father who almost lost his only biological son. And it was a 37-year-old man who brought a 2-year-old boy back to life.
Maybe he should be the one wearing a superhero mask and a red cape.
“The only thing I need is to know he’s okay,” Tyler said. “That’s the reward. It’s the price. My son still exists, and the rest of our lives aren’t wasted.
“This thread of the multiverse is where I can continue to live with my son.”
American Heart Association News covers heart and brain health. Any opinions expressed in this story do not reflect the official position of the American Heart Association. Copyright is owned or held by the American Heart Association, Inc., and all rights are reserved. If you have any questions or comments about this story, please email [email protected]
By Jaime Aron, American Heart Association News