The Heimlich maneuver is still working over 40 years after Dr. Henry Heimlich first touted using the abdominal thrust method for aiding choking victims back in 1974. Just ask the doctor himself. The namesake of the maneuver recently used it to save a woman’s life at his senior living center despite now being 96 years old.
According to the Associated Press, last week, the former chest surgeon was enjoying dinner at the Deupree House senior community in Cincinnati when the woman next to him began choking. Unsurprisingly, he knew exactly what to do. “As soon as I did the Heimlich maneuver, a piece of meat with a bone in it immediately popped out,” he was quoted as saying. Though he was able to save the woman’s life, unfortunately he missed a great opportunity to call it the “Me maneuver.”
Interestingly, Dr Heimlich originally claimed that it was the first time he had ever used his own maneuver, a claim verified by his son. However, that claim has be disputed by the AP, who wrote, “the doctor said in at least one previous account, a 2003 interview he did with BBC News Online, that he had applied his emergency technique three years earlier.”
As far as the woman Dr. Heimlich saved, Patty Ris was quite thankful to have such a fortuitous seating arrangement. "I definitely would have died right then and there," said the 87-year-old. I don’t want to tell anyone who in a senior living community how to deliver their quotes, but maybe rethink that phrasing a little Patty.