OKC Red Cross Hosting 'Save-A-Life Saturday' In Honor Of Wounded Congresswoman

Saturday, March 19th 2011, 9:42 am
By: News 9

Jacqueline Sit, News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Across the country, The American Red Cross are holding life saving classes to honor Representative Gabrielle Giffords and all those involved in the Tucson tragedy.

The class is so critical; Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford's husband did the very same training Friday in Houston. And here in the Metro, more than 100 people learned ways proven to save lives...

"Just learned a whole bunch of stuff," said 13-year-old Kyle Van Auken.

Kyle is spending his Saturday with his grandmother, getting a crash course first aid training and CPR.

Cardio pulmonary resuscitation or CPR was what saved Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford's life, and The American Red Cross offered free training with 'Save A Life Saturday' all across the country, including here in the Metro.

"If somebody does pass out and go unconscious you can help them," Kyle said.

Kyle's grandmother brought him here since his grandfather is in a hospice.

"He's very close to his grandfather," said Kyle's grandmother Corinne Van Auken. "There are times that Kyle is with his grandfather and I'm not there because I may have to run out to the store or something."

Red Cross spokesman Rusty Surette said the majority of people who survive a cardiac emergency are helped by a bystander.

A Red Cross survey shows 1 in 4 people have been in a situation where they needed CPR.

"Every second counts from the moment you dial 911 to when you're waiting on the paramedics. There are a few steps you can take to really save a person's life," Surette said.

For Kyle, they're life saving skills that he hopes he doesn't have to use--and for his grandmother--it gives her peace of mind.

"I think it's going to be a worthwhile experience for him and for him to learn. What he's learned today I think every young boy and girl out there should have that opportunity, because you just never know what you're going to come across out there," Corinne said.

The Oklahoma City Red Cross Chapter held the free classes at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m. at 601 N.E. 6th Street. Find out more about the classes offered and sign up for a CPR or other training course on the American Red Cross of Central Oklahoma website, or by calling (405) 228-9500.