Huntsville police officer trying to find man who saved his son’s life

WAAY 31 talked with the family about the frightening ordeal.

Posted: Jun 27, 2019 6:24 PM
Updated: Jun 28, 2019 7:58 AM

A Huntsville police officer and his family want to thank a UPS driver who saved their son's life when he was choking at a fast food restaurant.

Garrett Riley recalled the frightening last moments he remembers after taking the final bite out of his burrito at Taco Bell on June 21.

"I was freaking out. I didn't know what to do. I just blacked out," he said. "I tried to breathe. I sipped on a few sips of water, and water just kept coming back up."

The teenager was eating with a friend when he realized he was choking, and said he ran toward the trash can looking for help. An unidentified UPS driver noticed Riley was in distress.

"I remember him standing in front of me, saying, 'Are you OK?' And, I just shook my head no," Riley said.

Riley said that's when the man jumped into action. He doesn't remember it, but his friend told him the man gave him the Heimlich maneuver to dislodge the burrito he was choking on.

"It could have turned out in death. I couldn't breathe. I passed out," Riley said.

His dad, who's a Huntsville police sergeant, said he's still emotional thinking about the entire ordeal.

"A proper thank you is in order, and I appreciate him stepping up," the victim's dad, Sgt. Chris Riley, said.

Sgt. Riley said he wants the man recognized for coming to his son's aid when he needed it most.

"The citizens here, they thank me all the time for my job and I appreciate that, and this is just another instance of another citizen we have here in Huntsville stepping up," he said.

The Riley family said they hope someone out there knows who the UPS driver is that helped their choking son and will come forward with his name.

In the meantime, they're grateful the incident didn't turn out worse. 

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