Video: Quick-thinking student saves his choking friend

First aid training came in handy for freshman Ian Brown – and for the friend he saved.
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Freshman Ian Brown didn't so much leap into action when his friend started choking, but rather calmly walked over to him and saved his life.

The La Crosse High School student is being hailed as a hero after performing the Heimlich maneuver when his friend Will Olson started choking on a cheese curd this week.

The School District of La Crosse released a video of the drama this week, showing Brown's intervention as he helped Olson. The video has been viewed almost 100,000 times and has turned Olson into an overnight celebrity.

He was in a position to act because of the first aid training he'd received as a police explorer with the La Crosse Police Department, the school district said.

And in an interview with Good Morning America on Friday, Brown said: "I felt I was just doing what I was trained to do. I've wanted to be a police officer and that's what they've trained me to do."

"I felt thankful I had Ian, a friend, there who had the training to do what he did," Olson told the show. Here's the video:

Heimlich Heroics

Heimlich Heroics at Central High School! Freshman Ian Brown didn't waste any time jumping in and helping his choking classmate Will Olson. Brown learned the Heimlich maneuver as part of his first aid training as a Police Explorer with the City of La Crosse Police Department.

Posted by School District of La Crosse on Thursday, 23 March 2017

The top comment on the school district's Facebook post is from Jason Rodriguez, who wrote: "You saved his life Ian! As a physician, I have seen many cases where the outcome was not good. You demonstrated strong leadership skills, bravery and poise. Your future is bright."

Choking is the fourth leading cause of accidental death in the U.S., according to the National Safety Council, claiming more than 5,000 lives in 2015 alone.

The abdominal thrusts maneuver coined by Dr. Henry Heimlich in 1974 is responsible for saving more than 50,000 lives, his website says.

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