First responders say an employee from the La Quinta Inn & Suites in DeSoto is the reason why a 3-year-old boy is still alive.
Davion Dawson, 34, used CPR to help revive a toddler who almost drowned in the hot tub at the hotel on Saturday, Dec. 5.
“I just heard some screaming I’m like, 'Somebody is arguing or fighting,' and I see a guy running with his son saying, 'My son drowned in the hot tub, he drowned in the hot tub.' I was like, 'Bring him here, bring him here,' said Dawson.
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He said the little boy was placed on the carpet in the lobby. Dawson said the child didn't have a pulse and he immediately performed CPR.
“I was telling the family, 'Calm down, calm down,' and going through my head I was saying, 'Please don’t die, don’t let this child die, there’s hope for you, you still have your whole life ahead of you," explained Dawson. “No mother should have to bury their child before they bury themselves, it was like emotional still, it’s still kind of emotional.”
He said moments later the child started to respond.
“That was a relief for me when I found out he started breathing though, I knew when he started breathing and he started coughing up water, there’s hope for him, there’s hope for him," said Dawson.
"Him just getting that blood circulation getting that oxygen going to the child, long enough for the 'professionals' to get there and do what we do, it made all the difference in the world for this kid," said Bryan Whitacre, the DeSoto Fire and Rescue EMS Chief. "I have no doubt that this child would not have made it without Davion's help."
The child was taken to the hospital and has been there for several weeks. He's expected to be released later this week, according to the city.
On Tuesday Dawson was honored for his heroic efforts, but he said he's not a hero.
"With COVID going on and stuff, I don't care, that was a child that needed help and honestly I was willing to catch the COVID to save that child's life," said Dawson. "I tell some people you shouldn't have to be praised to do stuff that's right, you should automatically do the right thing."
This isn't the first time Dawson has used CPR to save someone's life. Last year he saved an elderly guest who wasn't breathing in his room.
"That was the first time ever and I was like, 'Woah!' and I’ll be honest in my head, I was like, 'It really worked, it really worked!' Like seriously, that was my first time ever doing it on a human being and I never thought I would have to do it on a child though," explained Dawson.
Given his track record of saving lives, when asked, he said he would consider becoming a paramedic.
"I think police department or fire department would be lucky to have Davion on our force," said Whitacre.
Dawson said he became CPR certified in 2009. Whitacre said what happened at the hotel is a prime example of why everyone should know how to perform the life-saving measure.