NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Educators can have a significant impact on a young life, but one 6th grader in Queens is alive because of them.
From her hospital bed Melanie told CBS2’s Dick Brennan about waking up after collapsing in the hall of Louis Armstrong Middle School on Thursday.
“All I remember is that when I came here I had like a wet thing wrapped around my head, and they took it off and I think that’s because I hit my head,” she said.
Math teacher Amy Spears heard children yelling for help and came running out of her classroom.
“She was just lying there motionless,” she recalled.
Spears is trained in CPR. With help from assistant principal Dianne Hayden and others they revived the East Elmhurst 6th grader with one of the school’s defibrillators.
“Those have been a mandate in schools since 2003,” Dr. Barry Love explained.
Dr. Love has been Melanie’s cardiologist since she was little.
He said she had a sudden cardiac arrest.
“Due to the quick thinking of her teachers and classmates they were able to resuscitate her,” he said.
Melanie will undergo surgery Tuesday to get her own defibrillator implanted in case this happens again. She also got the chance to meet Spears who came to visit her in the hospital.
“She said, ‘I’m the girl who helped you,” she recalled, “I’m like, ‘thank you.”
Melanie’s father Freddie said his daughter wouldn’t be alive if it wasn’t for the hard work from hospital staff and the ambulance crew,
“I’m still shocked and happy at the same time,” he said, “It’s a miracle.”
He even went to Louis Armstrong Middle School to thank the staff personally.
Tuesday is Melanie’s birthday, and October is Sudden Cardiac Awareness Month.