Reagan Potter credited with saving her mother from near death
From Andrew Harris, 10/22/21
Just over the Pennsylvania state line this mother-daughter bond couldn’t be stronger. Earlier this month Melissa Easton of Ulysses faced multiple life-threatening events.
The first of which Melissa really can’t recall much about. She was driving home from a friends house and started to feel dizzy. Her last memory of that commute was deciding to pull over and take a breather.
“I got dizzy … I went to pull over and next thing I know woke up in an ambulance,” explained Melissa.
Doctors later explained to her that she had a severe allergic reaction to the antibiotics she was taking. The Whitesville Central School graduate was treated and released with a diagnosis of “Covid-related pneumonia.”
Shortly after returning home from hospital Melissa had another spell and collapsed on the floor unconscious. Luckily, her daughter Reagan was on her way to check on her mother after a horrible day. What she found was a nightmare for any 16-year old and how she reacted is where the story takes turn toward inspirational.
Reagan explains what unfolded as she opened the door to the family home:
“I was honestly speechless. I found her in front of the fridge, I shook her twice and yelled her name and immediately called 911. I answered all of their questions and she asked if I had anyone around, the closest people I had were neighbors and my best friend Blade who actually rode with me to get mom after her wreck … ”
The 911 operator instructed Reagan to alert the neighbors of the emergency so they could help. Neighbors arrived and helped Reagan launch into lifesaving mode. “They came up and Blade helped me through it all while our other friend kept the dogs back and waved traffic.”
With her friends and neighbors surrounding her, Reagan summoned the strength and courage to begin administering CPR to her own mother until the ambulance arrived. During that endless ten minute wait for medics, Reagan saved her mothers life and explains how a young lady became her mother’s hero:
“I had to perform compressions on my mom and waiting for the ambulance to get there felt like the longest 10-15 minutes of my life,” she said. “What I had to do, I would never wish on anyone especially at 16 like myself.”
We all fear moments like these, suddenly being in a life or death situation that requires dramatic action. Our first responders go through extensive training to be able to compartmentalize the stress and fear in order to take action. Sixteen year old ladies like Reagan are not generally prepared to focus, coordinate, and act to save a life, let alone their own mother’s life. We asked her bluntly, how did you do this?
“When I walked in I immediately knew she had blacked out like she did before her wreck. It was very, very hard to stay strong and keep it together but I had Blade helping me through every second of it, and I knew the steps I had to take to save my mom until help could get there.”
Reagan also notes that a class at Votech provided her with the basic skills and a CPR course to draw upon as she took action.
Of course like most real heroes in this world, they always point out that they had great support. Reagan mentions her best pal Blade as key to helping keep it together and maintain focus. Cody Crowner, the EMT who responded, was instrumental according to Reagan:
“Cody is one of our local EMT’s, he had a HUGE part in all of this and I really can’t thank him enough.”
Mom, who works in the ER at UPMC Cole Hospital in Coudersport PA, is feeling much better and returned to work today! As with any major traumatic event, life is never the same. We asked Melissa how the life and death day has changed she and Reagan’s relationship:
“Learned to never take anything for granted. We were close to begin with but it definitely brought us closer.”