Texas congressman credited with saving boy choking on chicken nugget

(KENS 5) - A flight home Friday turned into a harrowing adventure for a mother from Helotes.

In the middle of the trip, and with her 6 month old daughter in her arms, her 3 year old son started choking on a chicken nugget.

Full of energy tonight, 3 year old Cash Flippen recalled sounding like a seal Friday night as he gasped for air with a chicken nugget blocking his airway.

His mother a seat away, said she was unable to help because she had Cash's infant sister in her arms.

"When I saw Cash choking, I jumped up and unbuckled my seatbelt and just alerted everybody that I needed assistance," Said Paige Flippen.

But Paige claims the man sitting next to Cash reacted with no hesitation.

"He had headphones on," Paige said. "He was listening to the news. But when he saw me calling the attention, he jumped up and assisted."

That Good Samaritan happened to be suburban San Antonio and Western Texas Congressman Pete Gallego, who told KENS 5 in a statement:

"I held him up, put one hand on his back, another hand on his sternum, compressed his chest as gently as possible but with enough force to dislodge the chicken nugget the boy was choking on. Luckily, I knew exactly what to do."

"I was very happy that a stranger jumped to my aid. Especially in this day in age I know people are scared to do anything," said Paige.

For Gallego, now locked in a tight re-election bid against Will Hurd, this story is fortuitous publicity worth its gold in campaign coverage.

Paige Flippen said she had no idea until after the chicken came out that the man who saved her son's life turned out to be her Congressman, but that she and her husband are incredibly thankful. "It's a story that my son will definitely have for the rest of his life," said Paige.



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