Congressman saves toddler choking on plane

KDBC
Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - 11:39pm

San Antonio toddler Cash Flippen, 3, has quite the story to tell when he's older; about the time a congressman saved his life.

"What were you eating?" a reporter asked.
"Chicken," he said.
"And what happened?"
"I was choking."

With Cash's baby sister in his mother's arms, Paige Flippen did the only thing she could do.

"I jumped up and unbuckled my seat belt and just alerted everybody that I needed assistance," she said.

Then, someone else jumped up too.
That someone? West Texas Congressman Pete Gallego.

"He had headphones on. He was listening to the news. But when he saw me calling the attention, he jumped up and assisted," said Paige.

The congressman described his next move.'

"I quickly unbuckled my seat belt, I stood (Cash) up, put one hand on his back, and put one on his sternum and eventually, you know, put enough pressure to force the chicken nuggets out," said Gallego.

He not only forced them out, he even had a souvenir from his heroic act: Cash's chicken leftovers on his suit.

"(A passenger) looked at me and said 'Wow, you were so fast. Are you a doctor?' And I started laughing," said Gallego. I said 'No. I'm not a doctor, I'm just a dad."

"I was very happy that a stranger jumped to my assistance. Especially in this day in age I know people are scared to do anything."

"I think a lot of people in my situation would have done the same thing," said Gallego. "I'm just glad that I was there and I had an opportunity to help."

This is only good news for the congressman, who is running for re-election in November against Republican Will Hurd.

As for Cash? His mother told reporters he still wanted more chicken after the whole ordeal.

He got cookies instead.

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