Red Cross Honors Two UCSB Lifesaving Heroes

Heroes walk among us every single day. They are more than just firefighters, doctors, nurses, police officers, they can look like you and me. Everyday heroes like our neighbors, students, construction workers, truck drivers, teachers, and more are going above and beyond for those around them.

Heroes like University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) students Jackson Smidt and Margarita Moran went above and beyond by performing lifesaving skills that sustained two lives.

Meet Jackson

It was a beautiful April day in Indian Wells, Calif., where Jackson Smidt was serving as an athletic trainer for the 2019 Big West Conference Championship Tennis Tournament at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.

Things would take a drastic turn when the tournament’s head referee collapsed mid-tournament. Jackson, who is trained in American Red Cross CPR/AED for Professional Rescuers, quickly rushed to the referee alongside his fellow athletic trainers. The gentleman was assessed and determined chest compressions were immediately needed.

Using an AED, it was set up and the system determined that a shock was needed. All stood clear as a shock was delivered. Athletic trainers continued to administer CPR while Jackson used a pulse oximeter to check the gentleman’s oxygen levels. They saw a small movement and the referee started to breathe. Emergency Medical Staff arrived on the scene and continued to provide care followed by transport to a local hospital for further treatment.

Listen to Jackson share his experience in his own words.

For his actions, Jackson was awarded the American Red Cross Certificate of Merit, the highest award given by the American Red Cross to an individual or team of individuals who saves or sustains a life by using skills and knowledge learned in an American Red Cross Training Services course. The certificate bears the signature of the President of the United States, who serves as the honorary chairman of the American Red Cross, a tradition established in 1913 by Woodrow Wilson; and the signature of Bonnie McElveen-Hunter, the chairman of the American Red Cross.

Meet Margarita

At UCSB’s Recreation Center in Santa Barbara, Calif., it was a warm summer day in August 2019 where Margarita Moran was on duty as a lifeguard. Margarita was guarding the water when she noticed a young swimmer visibly in distress. The swimmer was unable to reach the sides of the pool and continued to bob up and down. Margarita immediately reacted and entered the water, grabbing hold of the swimmer.

Utilizing her training in American Red Cross Lifeguarding/First Aid/CPR/AED, CPR/AED for Professional Rescuers, and First Aid for Public Safety Personnel, Margarita extracted the swimmer from the water and promptly assessed the swimmer. Margarita calmed the young swimmer and no additional care was needed.

Listen to Margarita share her experience in her own words.

For her actions, Margarita was awarded the American Red Cross Lifesaving Award, one of the highest awards given by the American Red Cross to an individual or team of individuals who saves or sustains a life by using skills and knowledge learned in an American Red Cross Training Services course. The certificate bears the signature of Gail McGovern, the President and CEO of the American Red Cross, and the signature of Bonnie McElveen-Hunter, the chairman of the American Red Cross.

Without a doubt, the skills learned by Jackson and Margarita in the American Red Cross Training Services courses helped to save the life of this referee and young swimmer. Ready to learn a lifesaving skill? Visit redcross.org/takeaclass to get started!

If you or someone you used a lifesaving skill to sustain a life, start an online nomination today.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s