Middle schooler helps choking classmate by using Heimlich maneuver 

  • Jack Mongeau stands with state trooper Rick Dupont while dressed in his state trooper costume. Mongeau has dreamed of being a state trooper since he was 6 years old.  Courtesy

  • Jack Mongeau, 11, saved his classmate Bella Moran’s life during a science class at Merrimack Valley Middle School Thursday when she started choking and he performed the Heimlich Maneuver.  Courtesy

Monitor staff
Friday, September 29, 2017

An 11-year-old with a dream of becoming a state trooper got his first taste of saving lives on Thursday.

Jack Mongeau was in science class at Merrimack Valley Middle School when he noticed that his friend Bella Moran, also 11, was choking on a lollipop.

“She put her hands around her throat and started turning purple,” Jack said. “I could read her lips and she was saying, ‘Help me, help me.’” 

Jack walked behind Bella, placed his hands in a fist under her ribs, and gave a squeeze. After applying pressure four or five times, the lollipop came up. 

“At first it was just an instinct – I didn't think about it,” Jack said. “It wasn't going through my mind that I would be able to save someone.” 

Jack’s father, Steve, is a licensed nurse’s assistant, and he taught his son how to do the Heimlich maneuver months ago, not thinking he would ever use it. 

Jack’s mother Bonnie said Jack has been set on being a state trooper since he was six years old. 

“He used to dress up every year as a state trooper for Halloween – and he would even wear the costume months after,” Bonnie Mongeau said. “We decorated his bike to look like a police car – with sirens and everything – and he would go around giving people tickets in the neighborhood.”

His mother said she once asked Jack if he might want to be something less dangerous than a state trooper. He told her no – he was “meant to save lives.”

“I can’t even find the words to say how proud of him I am,” she said. “You know your kids know certain things, but you don’t know how anyone is going to react in an emergency. I’m just so impressed by him.”