CARTERVILLE — For Pat Dozier of Carterville, April 19, 2017, started like any other day. At about 3:45 p.m., things changed.
Dozier and her husband, Marion, picked up two of their grandchildren, Jacob and Jolene, from school and took them home. Dozier said her husband was watching television in the living room.
“I got up and got some jelly beans,” Dozier said.
She popped the jelly beans into her mouth and immediately got choked. Dozier put her hand to her throat, the sign of choking, but her husband did not see or understand what was happening.
However, someone did get her sign — her 16-year-old grandson, Jacob Dozier. As Dozier ran into the garage, Jacob came running up behind her and performed the Heimlich maneuver.
The obstruction was immediately cleared and Dozier could breathe again.
Jacob, a Life Scout in Troop 77, had been through CPR training, which included the Heimlich maneuver. The training was led by Marty Hagan, a volunteer Carterville firefighter and Jacob’s previous Scout Master.
“She put her hand on her throat,” he said, adding that he knew she needed help and was glad he was there.
“I don’t know what I would have done if he had not been there,” Pat Dozier said.
Jacob’s mom, Amy Dozier, asked how he learned this lifesaving technique.
“I learned it in Boy Scouts,” he calmly answered.
For his quick action, Jacob earned the Medal of Merit Award from Boy Scouts of America. The National Council of Boy Scouts of America presents four awards to outstanding Scouts or those who have provided special service to others. The Medal of Merit is awarded to Scouts who have performed some act of meritorious service above and beyond that normally expected of a youth or adult member of BSA.
Jacob was a special guest at the Carterville City Council meeting Oct. 10, where he was presented the Medal of Merit during a special Boy Scout Court of Honor. He also was honored with a proclamation from the city of Carterville. Mayor Brad Robinson read the proclamation and gave Jacob a copy of it at the meeting. Many family members, fellow Boy Scouts and friends attended the meeting, including Hagan.
Jacob started in scouting as a Tiger Scout. He has been a member of Boy Scouts for 11 years. His dad is William Dozier.
"I didn't know they would make such a big deal," Pat Dozier said.
Although she was back to normal immediately, she may not eat any jelly beans for a long time.