BC’s Hamilton saves student’s life

Published 6:42 pm Tuesday, February 16, 2010

To save a life is a life-changing event, not just for the victim, but also for the hero as Bainbridge College student Byron Hamilton attests.

After saving the life of a fellow student on Feb. 8, the electronics major has considered changing career paths to a health care field, such as paramedic technology or emergency medical technology.

“To save a life really changes you,” said Hamilton, who applied lessons learned this semester from instructor David Sarrette’s first aid class.

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“It makes you feel good that you’ve done something like that,” he added, smiling broadly, as he spoke with two of his professors about the profound experience.

“I keep thinking, man that’s a good feeling. We are all one. I don’t care what color. We’re humans.”

The Bainbridge resident, who is from Palm Beach County, Fla., where his family still lives, happened to be in the right place with the right training on that Monday morning. He woke up very preoccupied about his studies and “something told me to get up and go there,” he said, noting that he usually arrives later because he has afternoon classes.

In the parking lot a fellow student was obviously in an emergency situation—non-responsive and having difficulty breathing. Others nearby did not know what to do.

“I was a little nervous, but then I thought about what Mr. Sarrette told us in class,” Hamilton said, noting that he knows first-hand the difference paying attention in class can make.

Taking command of the situation, he told one person to call 911 and got help safely situating the victim on the asphalt, and having someone check the vehicle for extra clothing to help keep the person warmer that cold morning.

He stayed with the student until paramedics arrived and took over, a crowd having gathered after Bainbridge Public Safety officers and BC security personnel were on the scene.

“They congratulated Hamilton for doing everything right to help save the life of his fellow student,” Sarrette said, adding “congratulations are in order to Byron, a true BC hero.”