The Sideshow

Good Samaritan performs CPR on newborn on the side of the road

The Sideshow

A 21-year-old Michigan man is being credited with saving a newborn's life after performing CPR on the 3-pound, 8-ounce girl who had just been born on the side of a road.

The story comes from ClickOnDetroit.com, which spoke with Ryan Cornelissen about his unexpected heroics. He said he'd been on his way to the bank when he saw a man attempting to flag him down. Cornelissen pulled over and learned that the man's wife had just had a baby, and that the newborn was having trouble breathing. The couple had been on their way to the hospital to have the baby, but had run out of time.

"The mom was sitting in the front seat, she had a blanket, and all I saw was the top of the baby's head," Cornelissen said. Neither parent spoke English very well, so Cornelissen called 911 for them. The dispatcher explained how to perform CPR on the newborn.

"Tilt its head back just a little, but not too much, OK? ... You're going to cover the baby's nose and mouth with your mouth," the dispatcher said.

After several attempts, the baby, born two months early, began breathing. "Oh, yes! The baby is whimpering," Cornelissen told the dispatcher. "She's breathing!"

He recalled, "I remember the baby's face. I will never forget. It was awesome."

Neither, it seems, will the baby's parents ever forget. A few days later, Cornelissen visited with the baby's father, who gave the hero a big, happy hug.

Cornelissen is currently enrolled in junior college and hopes to be a police officer.

The baby girl is doing well, but will stay at the hospital for several weeks before she heads home.

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