High School CPR Class Pays Dividends

High School CPR Class Pays Dividends photo
More than 100 Amityville Memorial High School students have learned life-saving skills through the First Aid/CPR course, and for one senior that training recently paid off. 

Dennis Cisneros, who took the half-year course in spring 2016 as a sophomore, used his training last month to assist a co-worker who suffered a medical emergency. During a work shift as a server at a restaurant in Farmingdale, a fellow employee passed out in the bathroom from an apparent overdose. Dennis administered CPR, giving the victim chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation until first responders arrived. His immediate intervention contributed to his co-worker’s survival. 

“Unfortunately, there are situations like this that do happen,” Dennis said. “This is one of those things that I was prepared for. This is what any human would do for anyone else, a stranger or a friend.”

Amityville Memorial High School has offered the course for the past three years, and students who successfully complete it are certified for two years through the American Red Cross. The course, taught by health teacher Chris Gannon, provides training for situations that students may encounter at home, in school or in the workplace. Topics include basic first aid, injury control, choking, CPR, AED usage and concussion awareness. 

“This is why we offer the course,” Mr. Gannon said. “These are skills that students learn for real-life moments that could help save a life.”

Dennis enrolled in the course because he plans to enlist in the U.S. Army after graduation and wanted the medical training. He is a three-year member of the varsity soccer team including the 2015 New York State champions and the 2016 Long Island champions. Additionally, he is a member of the Liberty Partnership Program and the Hispanic Heritage Club, and is a kicker for the varsity football team.

He will be honored publicly for his life-saving actions at the November Amityville Board of Education meeting.