It was the most terrifying moment in one young mother’s life when her baby recently started choking on formula. But it all turned out OK thanks to the quick thinking and incredible actions of a San Jose city worker.
The incident occurred at the Southside Community Center in South San Jose, where on Tuesday that mother, Sharlene Bruzone, got the chance to thank Tiffany Roth for saving her baby Diana's life.
Bruzone had been visiting family next door to the community center with her 11-day-old twins when Diana began choking. She ran with the child and her sister-in-law to a nearby fire station, but the crew there was out on a call.
That’s when Roth, who was working at the community center, came to their aid.
"Tiffany immediately grabbed the baby and started giving her CPR," Bruzone said.
Roth placed Diana on her on her palm and began CPR, using training she received from the city.
"They were holding her, and you could just tell that it wasn’t right," Roth said. "She was starting to turn blue in the face, completely limp. She was not over 5 pounds. Back blows were terrifying. I was so scared I was going to break her little ribs."
It was only later that Bruzone learned her daughter had choked on formula. At the time, all she knew was her child was turning blue and lost consciousness. But soon after Roth took over, Diana began crying and screaming and breathing again.
On Tuesday, Bruzone brought Diana and her twin sister to meet Roth. It was the first time Roth held Diana since helping save her life last month.
"Yeah. The baby is bigger this time," Roth said.
"Oh my gosh, she's in my life forever," Bruzone said about Roth, tears in her eyes. "I’m very thankful I got the opportunity to say thank you."
Roth, a mother herself, shied away from the praise.
"I don’t know, I just feel like I happened to beat at the right place at the right time," she said.