Former mayor saves WWII vet with Heimlich maneuver - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Former mayor saves WWII vet with Heimlich maneuver

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CLARKSVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Witnesses are crediting a former mayor with saving a man's life. A World War II veteran was choking and nearly unconscious until Johnny Piper stepped in.

"What I did was nothing anyone else would not do," said Piper. "Anyone else would do it. People are out there willing and capable and able to help those in need, and that's what this is about."

Piper said he was at the Blackhorse Pub on Wednesday night when he was called over to a table where his friend, World War II veteran Wade Hadley, was stooped over.

"I asked Mr. Hadley what was wrong," Piper remembered. "He could not respond. He was fading in and out of consciousness. His hands were starting to turn blue. There was blue in his face."

Realizing Hadley was choking, Piper said he hadn't been trained on how to do the Heimlich maneuver, but in an urgent situation, he had to try.

"I went around his chair and put my hands underneath his navel and did the upward thrust with my hands clasped together," said Piper.

After Piper dislodged what was in his air tube, Hadley quickly recovered.

Hadley declined an interview for this story but did tell Channel 4 Piper saved his life.

"I wish Mr. Hadley peace and love and happiness and a long life," said Piper. "I consider him a friend, and I want him to be a friend for a long time to come."

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