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Shelby Township police quickly spring into action, save choking 1-year-old

'Seconds could change your life'
Posted at 11:40 PM, Jun 14, 2024

SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — A Shelby Township family is traumatized yet grateful after quick-thinking Shelby Township police officers jumped into action to save a 1-year-old who was choking on cereal.

On Thursday afternoon, the Doroslovic family was enjoying their day and nothing was out of the ordinary. Lisa Doroslovic's grandson Mateo Pearson was enjoying his favorite cereal, Lucky Charms. That's when the family noticed he started breathing irregularly, turned blue and then became unresponsive.

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"I grabbed him, I pounded him on his back and I did the finger sweep and I didn’t feel anything," Doroslovic said.

The entire family panicked. They called the Shelby Township Police Department, which responded about two minutes after the call was made.

Shelby Township Police officers performing life-saving measures on Mateo Pearson
Shelby Township Police officers performing life-saving measures on Mateo Pearson

“Definitely very scary," Shelby Township Police Lt. Mark Benedettini said. "Our department trains for this all the time."

Officers performed life-saving measures, including CPR. The Shelby Township Fire Department arrived on scene moments later and determined that the child had a pulse prior to being transported to the hospital.

“Our police department as well as the Utica Police Department blocked off several intersections for the ambulance to try to expedite the trip to the hospital," Benedettini said. “I have no doubt stopping the intersections helped cause traffic out here, especially during the afternoon is really crazy.”

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According to family, once at the hospital, medical staff found a marshmallow lodged inside Mateo's throat. Parts of the marshmallow made its way toward his lung.

He was intubated and in the neonatal intensive care unit. Mateo is now responsive, breathing on his own and getting back to his old self. The family credits Mateo's health to the quick-thinking actions of the officers and firefighters.

Mateo is healthy and safe after the terrifying experience
Mateo is healthy and safe after the terrifying choking experience

“Seconds could change your life. A marshmallow could’ve took my grandson," Doroslovic said. “Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I don’t even have words to express to you."

The family and police department hopes this story serves as a reminder for residents to become CPR certified.

"Just shows the importance of knowing CPR and knowing how to administer CPR to somebody," Benedettini said. “It was truly a team effort that saved this baby’s life and like I said, it’s a great ending to a difficult story.”