A Florida teen saved her best friend’s life just one day after learning CPR. Torri’ell Norwood is a
16-year-old high school student with dreams of becoming a nurse one day. When her high school offered a CPR training course, the 11th-grader decided to get certified-never thinking she would use the life saving skill so soon.
The very next day, Torri’ell was riding in a car with some friends in St. Petersburg, Florida, when the car they were in was hit by another vehicle, sending them crashing into a tree. Their vehicle began to smoke and bystanders yelled for them to get out because it could explode. Torri’ell was unharmed and jumped out, running away from the car. When she realized her best friend A’zarria Simmons wasn’t by her side she immediately ran back.
She found A’zarria slumped over in the back seat, unconscious. The teen had a large wound in her forehead, and when Torri’ell pulled her out of the car and rested her on the ground, she checked for a pulse — and found nothing there. The lifesaving skills she learned the day before kicked in and she began chest compressions and rescue breaths.
“I just saw my friend on the ground and knew what I had to do,” she said. It took 30 compressions and two breaths before A’zarria gasped and came around. A’zarria received several stitches on her forehead and said she does not remember the accident or its immediate aftermath, but she’s not surprised that her best friend since 7th grade stepped up. She said “I wasn’t shocked by her doing it because she always does stuff for me. She always has my back. It’s deeper than a friendship, it’s been deeper than that before this accident and all this happened. It’s just made me realize that if she wasn’t there, I wouldn’t be here today.”
Torri’ell’s instructor Erika Miller said “It’s just one of the most amazing things. As a teacher, we hope all the time that somebody’s listening, paying attention, that they can find a way to take what they’ve learned in class into the real world.” Torri’ell is now being hailed as a hero in her community and the two friends say they both want to work in the medical field.