Miss. dispatcher recognized, reunited with man she helped save
Lee County Dispatcher Amber Moody helped a caller perform CPR until first responders could arrive
By William Moore
Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal
TUPELO, Miss. — When a Tupelo woman found her boyfriend unresponsive on the floor one November morning, a Lee County 911 dispatcher helped her perform CPR until first responders could arrive.
Their efforts helped save the life of Shuntravious Shannon, 20, and both women were recognized for their efforts this week. Lee Communications presented plaques to both on Friday afternoon.
Nakkitas Scales, 20, said she and Shannon went Christmas shopping on Nov. 10. They got home and went to bed early. When she woke up in the middle of the night, he was asleep and breathing normally. When she woke up the next morning, he was on the floor but still breathing.
"When I came back a little later, he wasn't breathing," Scales said. "When I lifted his head, brown stuff came out of his nose."
She quickly called 911 and dispatcher Amber Moody explained to Scales and her mother the CPR process, step-by-step. They got Shannon flat on his back on the floor, tilted his head back to open the air passage and began chest compressions.
"Getting started right away with compressions gives the best possible chance of recovery," Moody said. "You could tell there was concern in her voice, but she wanted to do whatever she needed to do to fix the problem."
With Scales on the phone, she relayed the instructions to her mother, and Naneke Scales started the CPR. When her arms started tiring, Scales put the phone on speaker and took over with the compressions until Tupelo firefighters arrived to take over, following shortly thereafter by medics and an ambulance.
"I was pretty scared. I thought I freaked out, but I guess I was calm," Scales said.
Her mother said she was proud of her daughter for staying calm, cool and collected during the entire ordeal.
Shannon was transported to the hospital where it was determined he had accidentally overdosed on fentanyl.
"I have no memory of any of it. The first thing I remember is waking up in the hospital," Shannon said.
After recovering from the episode, he spent the next four weeks in the hospital learning how to walk and talk again.
"I had to do physical therapy to learn how to walk, regain my balance and help build up strength," Shannon said.
Members of the medical staff were not sure initially if Shannon would survive, so his full recovery was somewhat of a miracle.
For Moody, Friday's plaque presentation was a welcome change. She got to meet Scales and Shannon for the first time and see the result of a 911 call.
"We (dispatchers) don't always get to see the end of the story. When the call ends, the story ends for us. It's like getting to the end of a book and closing it without reading the last page," Moody said. "It's amazing to see that everything worked out."
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