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South Canyon Elementary teacher receives Certificate of Extraordinary Personal Action award

and is only the second person in the state to win the award.
Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 6:47 PM CST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - A South Canyon Elementary teacher was presented with a life-saving award from the American Red Cross.

Melissa Crouch received the Certificate of Extraordinary Personal Action from the Red Cross and is only the second person in the state to win the award.

Crouch, who teaches Kindergarten at the school, noticed one of her students choking on an orange during snack time in December of last year.

Mrs. Crouch performed the Heimlich Maneuver on Jonathon -- that helped remove the orange and saved Jonathon’s life.

The teacher says she was blown away and humbled to receive the award.

At snack time earlier this week, Jonathon Gibbons began to choke on an orange. When Mrs. Crouch...
At snack time earlier this week, Jonathon Gibbons began to choke on an orange. When Mrs. Crouch noticed he was struggling she performed the Heimlich Maneuver, which cleared his airway an ultimately saved his life.(Rapid City Area Schools)

”I feel like it was what any teacher would do. These are our little babies, our besties, our little people we take care of day in and day out, and any of my colleagues would do the same thing,” Melissa Crouch, South Canyon teacher

Crouch continued saying she felt like she was at the right place at the right time and she is beyond blessed that Johnathan is OK.

At snack time earlier this week, Jonathon Gibbons began to choke on an orange. When Mrs. Crouch...
At snack time earlier this week, Jonathon Gibbons began to choke on an orange. When Mrs. Crouch noticed he was struggling she performed the Heimlich Maneuver, which cleared his airway an ultimately saved his life.(Rapid City Area Schools)

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