Former CFL player Jerrell Freeman has always been on the ball on the football field, but his quick thinking Sunday saved a man’s life.
Freeman, a linebacker with the NFL’s Chicago Bears, was at an airport in Austin, Texas, en route to training camp. He’d stopped to have a sandwich when he noticed another man stand up and have a concerned look on his face.
A woman noticed the man was choking and attempted the Heimlich manoeuvre but couldn’t deliver enough force. So the six-foot, 236-pound Freeman stepped in, needing to perform the move twice in order resolve the situation.
Afterwards, the two men posed for a photo together and Freeman later tweeted about the life-saving incident.
“CRAZY!! Just saved my guy Marcus Ryan’s life by using the Heimlich manoeuvre in the middle of the Austin airport! WOW Mom would be proud haha,” Freeman tweeted.
Freeman’s mother is a nurse and the two had spoken about what to do in such an emergency. Freeman said it marked the first time he’d ever been required to perform the life-saving move.
And, he added, the man later returned to finishing the rest of his sandwich.
Freeman is entering his second season with Chicago, registering 110 tackles in 12 games in 2016 after signing a three-year, US$12-million deal. He played for the Saskatchewan Roughriders from 2009-11 before joining the Indianapolis Colts.
Freeman spent two seasons with Indianapolis before heading to Chicago.