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Feel Good Friday: A special thank you for a substitute teacher who saved a choking 7-year-old

Feel Good Friday

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nominate someoneNominate someone and Ashley Furniture HomeStore are teaming up every week to bring you some good news during Feel Good Friday!

We want to thank people in our community with random acts of kindness and leave you feeling good.

Earlier this month, 7-year-old Aaron Lewis was in class at Dora Erickson Elementary when he put a sour candy in his mouth. It got stuck in his throat and he walked up to the teacher’s desk to say he needed help.

His regular teacher was not in the 2nd grade class that day but Mrs. Diane Hanson was substituting.

“He came up to me and said, ‘Teacher, teacher – I’m choking!” Hanson recalls. “I didn’t know if he was really serious so I took the lid of my water and gave him a drink hoping it would go down. It didn’t.”

Hanson stood up, turned Aaron around and began giving him the Heimlich maneuver.

“I’ve seen it done on TV and I just got right up underneath and pushed right on his chest,” she says. “I was afraid I was going to break some ribs but I pushed until it came out.”

Hanson said she pushed ten times and the candy suddenly projected itself across the room. Aaron turned white and was taken to the office but he was ok.

His mother, Kera Lewis, was at home when she received a phone call from the school.

“Had she not been there that day – I don’t know what would have happened,” Lewis says. “Thank God for her.”

Aaron Lewis with Diane Hanson, a substitute teacher who performed the Heimlich maneuver on Aaron when he was choking on a piece of hard candy. | Nate Eaton,

Hanson says she’s never done the Heimlich maneuver before and just jumped into action. She also believes she had assistance from a higher power.

“I think I had help. I think there was someone there helping me,” she says. decided to thank Hanson for her actions that day. We went with Aaron and his mom for the special reunion. Watch the video above to see the surprise!

If you have an idea for Feel Good Friday, email


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