Imagine you’re enjoying a perfectly prepared steak and a piece gets lodged in your throat, cutting off your airway and making it impossible for you to breathe.
To make matters worse, you live alone. What would you do?
Thankfully for a Florida man named Billy Bass, his neighbor Karen Aranda was home when he decided to run to her house after experiencing this exact scenario.
And her security camera caught the entire thing on video.
“Thank God above that she was home. She’s a hero, she saved my life, she’s a blessing,” Bass told WOFL.
The beloved middle school gym teacher began frantically banging on his neighbor’s front door and motioned to his throat. He was clearly in a panic when she answered.
“He’s always laughing, but when I saw that look in his eyes I knew something was wrong,” she said.
Bass and Aranda’s family have been friends for over 15 years.
Bass said they’re like family to him, which explains why he chose to go to their house in search of help.
Without hesitation, Aranda began performing the Heimlich maneuver on Bass until the chunk of steak finally came out.
“Did it come out?” she can be heard asking in the video.
WARNING: The video below contains vulgar language that some viewers may find offensive. Viewer discretion is advised.
“I can breathe now,” Bass told her. “I could not breathe.”
Once Bass’ airway was cleared, he took a second to catch his breath.
The surveillance footage captured an emotional embrace between Bass and Aranda.
“You saved my life,” he said in the video.
Aranda told WOFL that though she had been trained in CPR, she’d never had to actually use it on anybody.
“It was very hard to do. It’s the scariest thing. I work in the dental field, so I do take the CPR course. I’ve never ever used it on anybody,” she said.
Bass was beyond thankful that Aranda was able to save his life, so he decided to repay her with flowers and beer.
“I call her the ‘Latina Wonder Woman,’ she was so strong!” he told WOFL.
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