A Georgia Chick-fil-A employee jumped into action and saved the life of a young girl after she heard the child’s mother screaming for help in the drive-thru. Liliana Leahy stopped at her local Chick-fil-A restaurant in Newnan with her daughter Theia on her way to the grocery store.
While waiting in the drive-thru line, Theia suddenly began making choking noises in the backseat.
Terrified, her mother Leahy jumped out of her seat and ran to help her daughter, whose eyes were filling with tears as she motioned that she had something stuck in her throat. “I have learned before to help in this situation, but I froze and panic set in, so I screamed for help,” Leahy said.
Immediately, a Chik-fil-A worker ran over to help and began performing the Heimlich on Theia. Sure enough, a coin flew out of the girl’s mouth. Leahy said the ordeal was only a couple of minutes but it felt like forever. Chick-fil-A staff, who have a reputation for being among the friendliest fast food workers in the country, then gave Theia ice cream after she asked for some.
After the terrifying ordeal, Leahy asked friends on a social media post to help track down the worker who saved her daughter’s life — an employee named Mia, whom she was able to speak with. Mia Isabella Velez, 18, said she originally thought what she heard was laughing but once she recognized what she was hearing as cries for help, her instincts kicked in. Velez said “It’s surreal when you hear that you saved her life. You don’t expect to get that title. It’s a lesson for all of us to learn that you can be the light to somebody else, and I’m so glad I got to be the one for that family.”