At the Red Cross, we offer a variety of courses that cover topics ranging from first aid and performing CPR to water safety and babysitting skills. Each course was created to teach the lifesaving training and skills you need to help prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. This Red Cross Month, we’d like to highlight Brittany Ingenito, a senior at Kennesaw State University, who used her Red Cross training to help a man in need. Read on to learn what happened that day.
A Life-Changing Moment
On June 13, 2018, Brittany completed her Red Cross CPR training at her university. She had no idea that she would have to put her training to the test the very next day.
While driving to dinner, Brittany and her then boyfriend got stuck behind a line of cars. Curious about the cause of the pile up, the pair drove closer to the scene. With her window rolled down, Brittany was shocked to see a motorcyclist lying unconscious on the ground. One of his friends was holding his head up while another dialed 9-1-1. In that moment she knew what she needed to do.
Using Her Red Cross Training
Brittany asked her boyfriend to pull over and ran toward the motorcyclist. She told his friends that she was CPR certified and jumped into action. Next, she stabilized his head, checked his breathing and then started chest compressions. The motorcyclist’s friend who dialed 9-1-1 put the phone on speaker so Brittany could talk to the operator until the EMTs arrived.
“Even though my heart was racing, as soon as I saw the motorcyclist, I knew what I needed to do because of my training. When I started talking to the 9-1-1 operator, I felt calm. Since I was CPR certified, I knew I had to take charge of the situation and direct everyone until the EMTs got there,” said Brittany.
After Brittany had performed 130 chest compressions, the EMTs took over. Later she headed home to tell her mom what happened.
“My mom was in tears because she knew how hard that was for me to do. She was just so proud of me for being courageous and taking the time to stop and help someone in need,” said Brittany.
Being Honored for Bravery
On Jan. 25, 2019, Brittany was honored with the Red Cross Lifesaving Award and Certificate of Merit for her effort to help the injured motorcyclist. This award is the highest honor an individual can receive for performing an extraordinary act of bravery, compassion and service.
“It was an honor just to be recognized. I know how much time and effort the Red Cross puts into recognizing people who are certified,” Brittany said.
Today, Brittany encourages everyone to get certified in first aid and CPR so they have the knowledge and skills to act during emergencies.
“I tell my family and friends that getting certified is not only important just in case you have to perform CPR, but because you also learn crucial first aid skills that can help people with more minor injuries,” said Brittany.
Take a Training Class
Register to take a Red Cross training course at redcross.org/take-a-class today to learn lifesaving skills for tomorrow.