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Mar Vista High NJROTC Students Save the Day

Created: 06 November, 2009
Updated: 26 July, 2022
2 min read

Emergency Training Aids Classmate

ROTC students Mathew, Brenda Dube, and Kenneth Barlahan jumped to the aide of a fellow student.
ROTC students Mathew, Brenda Dube, and Kenneth Barlahan jumped to the aide of a fellow student.

 When a student athlete fainted in class, she was lucky enough to be surrounded by Navy Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (NJROTC) classmates who knew just what to do.

 A female student had been training hard, but hadn’t had food or drink that day. During advanced placement calculus, she lost consciousness and fell from her seat. Fortunately, NJROTC students Matthew Bell and Kenneth Barlahan were also in the class and at the ready.

 The two NJROTC officers, both Mar Vista High seniors, jumped up in time to catch the fainting student, protecting her head before she hit the floor. They checked her pulse and made sure her breathing was unblocked. Then they put her in recovery position.

 Another NJROTC student, Brenda Dube sprang into action, running to the main office to get the ill student’s emergency contact information. While they waited for paramedics to arrive, the trio of NJROTC officers continued to care for the sick student, cradling her head and checking her vital signs.

 “They stayed calm and did all the right things,” said school nurse Kelly Debenham who was called to the scene and supervised.

 Debenham said she was impressed by how well the NJROTC students responded to the emergency. “They are trained in first aid and they knew just what to do,” she said. “It was a reminder of how valuable these programs are.”

 The student who fainted regained consciousness and fully recovered after receiving water and food.

 As for the NJROTC students, they were glad to have been in the right place at the right time to help. “We didn’t have time to worry or think about it,” said Kenneth Barlahan of their response to the crisis. “We just reacted and got things done.” His classmate, Matthew Bell added, “It was a good feeling that we were able to help a person in their time of need.”

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 Brenda Dube said all NJROTC students receive emergency training and must annually complete certification in CPR and Automated External Defibrillator use. “Some of the kids in class didn’t know what to do. It was a bit chaotic,” she said. “But I was glad I was able to react and help.”

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