CPR delivered: ‘I left a pizza boy and came back a pizza man’
Most of you reading this story are from elsewhere in the country or world, so we want to offer you a couple of other cool stories from our neck of the woods.
• In May 2015, a valedictorian in a small town came out as gay in her graduation speech and got a standing ovation. (With video)
• Here’s the original story on Shooters Grill in Rifle — yes, a town called Rifle — where the servers carry loaded guns.
• Last year, a town trustee in Carbondale, about 30 miles from Aspen, talked about becoming homeless, highlighting a resort-region housing crisis.
UPDATE: Pizza Man Anson Lemmer talks about being grateful for the worldwide support. By the way, his tip was $25.
The original story appears below.
Anson Lemmer had no way of knowing that on his last delivery order of the night of June 15 for Uncle Pizza in Glenwood, he would perform CPR and help with a potentially life-saving rescue.
Lemmer, 19, of Denver is staying in Glenwood with his parents to work over the summer. Only two days after starting with Uncle Pizza, this incident occurred.
“This was my very last order of the night. I expected to just run right out there and back,” Lemmer said.
Instead, when he arrived at the address on Valley View Road with a hot pizza, he saw a man turning blue outside of the house. Two other people were with the man — one attempting CPR and one on the phone calling it in.
“When I pulled up there, I knew something was wrong, and I had to act. They asked me right away if I knew CPR,” Lemmer said. “I jumped in right away to do those chest compressions.”
Trained in CPR a year ago, Lemmer didn’t think twice about acting. He said it was like a fight-or-flight choice, and he had to fight. A situation like that is tense with a lot of variables, he said.
“It’s important to not get caught up in the bystander effect,” Lemmer said. “I felt a couple of ribs break. He’s going to wake up with sore ribs.”
It all happened in 10 to 15 minutes, he said, when EMTs from the Glenwood Fire Department showed up to take over. Lemmer said they shook his hand and thanked him.
“He started to breathe … very wheezy. Not coherent yet,” Lemmer said. “I backed off.”
Fire Chief Gary Tillotson confirmed that his EMTs responded to an incident on the 15th of a CPR in progress.
The man was taken to Valley View Hospital, but the man’s name and further details were not available.
His manager thought he had gotten lost, wondering what had taken so long. Soon after, he called his parents.
“I called my parents and said this has been the craziest pizza delivery ever. I left a pizza boy and came back a pizza man,” Lemmer said. “They were proud of me. Totally unexpected thing.”
They were glad he stepped up, he said.
“If I stumble across something like that, I’m going to do anything I can to help,” Lemmer said. “They didn’t want the pizza after that, of course.”
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The Forest Service plans to replace the Carbondale Aspen-Sopris ranger district station with a newer, larger facility.