Qwasie Reid has been fired, reports News 12 Brooklyn, and there is outrage over his termination. Reid is an EMT who was flagged down in his ambulance by a school-safety agent who needed help saving a choking 7-year-old girl. A GoFundMe page has been set up for Reid. As of this writing, the GoFundMe page for Qwasie has raised $3,889 in one day.
Qwasie couldn’t resist the urge to help a 7-year-old girl who could’ve died from choking. Therefore, Reid left his non-emergency laser-eye surgery patient with Qwasie’s EMT partner in the ambulance as Qwasie performed lifesaving attempts on the girl, who hadn’t received any CPR at that point and was turning blue.
— Jon Cohen (@js_cohen) October 30, 2015
The GoFundMe page wasn’t set up by Reid himself but on behalf of Qwasie from folks who thought Reid got a raw deal. On GoFundMe, an update states that Reid learned about the GoFundMe page and really appreciates the fact someone would set up a GoFundMe page for him and for all the GoFundMe contributions thus far.
“I just got an email from Qwasie: Wow man I’m speechless I really appreciate it. On behalf of me and my family we appreciate you.”
As reported by WGN, 7-year-old Noelia-Lisa Echavarria is a girl in the first grade at a school in Brooklyn who tended to eat slowly but was rushed to finish her lunch. Echavarria exited the lunchroom still eating, but she was choking and holding her throat, reports the girl’s uncle, Carlos Santiago. Someone ran outside and flagged down Qwasie’s ambulance as a result, begging Reid for help for the little girl.
“My niece came out of lunchroom eating a sandwich. They say she was choking. She was holding her throat.”
Noelia-Lisa’s lips and face were blue, and she had no response. Reid cleared obstructions from the girl’s mouth and gave her oxygen via a mask. Reid also used a defibrillator to try and save her life and began CPR. Reid felt the urge to help, especially since Qwasie said that no one else besides him was helping the child in terms of performing CPR besides Qwasie. Prior to Reid helping the girl, it’s unknown if anyone had attempted to perform the Heimlich maneuver on the girl.
— Karalot (@Karalot1) October 28, 2015
Qwasie says he’d try and save the girl all over again if Reid could. Qwasie explains that he made a vow as an EMT to save lives, so that’s why Reid left his ambulance. Qwasie says he prayed for the girl to get better, and now Reid’s GoFundMe page is up to $3,889 raised by more than 150 people in one day. Obviously, those folks giving money to the Qwasie GoFundMe page feel that Reid was unfairly fired and appreciate a man like Qwasie who can follow the spirit of the law, if not the letter of the law. Reid reported that money is the central focus of some of those rules, instead of the focus being on saving lives.
“I made a vow to save a life. If I had to do jump out of the ambulance again, I’d do anything. I pray to God she feels better.”
Reid was at first suspended, and now Qwasie has been fired for helping the Bushwick school student. On Facebook, folks are reacting to the news that Reid was fired by Assist Ambulance.
Qwasie said it’s his job to save lives, reports the New York Daily News. Sadly, Reid’s efforts might not have saved the 7-year-old’s life, because she is not expected to recover. While Qwasie tried his best to save her life, Reid’s impromptu patient might not recover, and her family blames the school for such actions. In the meantime, Qwasie is being praised for his heroic efforts, and Reid’s GoFundMe balance and contributions reflect that fact.
[Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images]