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‘Longest 60 seconds of my life': Inmate honored for saving deputy who was choking

Deputy Robert Rensch had originally trained the inmate on how to use the Heimlich maneuver to assist someone when choking


Photo/YouTube via WAVY News

By Ashley Silver

CHESAPEAKE, Va. — An unlikely bond was forged between a retired deputy and an inmate at a Virginia corrections facility after the inmate reportedly saved the deputy from choking.

According to KCRA News, Curtis Harrell was in a summer workforce program where retired deputies teach skills to help inmates secure jobs after release when he saw Deputy Robert Rensch choking on a sandwich.

“At that time, I gave him the Heimlich,” Harrell told KCRA. “It took a little while, but eventually he coughed up what he was choking on. It was the longest 60 seconds of my life.”

Ironically, Rensch was the person that originally trained Harrell on how to use the Heimlich maneuver to assist someone when choking. Harrell received a citizen’s service award this week for saving Rensch.

“Anytime you can save a life you should, and he’d do the same for me,” Harrell said.

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