GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — An 18-year-old jumped into action to save his stepfather’s life when seconds mattered most. 

John Salmon had a medical emergency at his home in Greensboro on Monday. He’s no stranger to emergencies after spending two decades as a firefighter in Guilford County.  

This time he was in need of help from his wife Kelley Salmon and stepson Bryant Rollins. 

“I don’t see myself as a hero,” Bryant said. “I feel like I just did the right thing.”  

Kelley and Bryant knew something was wrong when they heard a loud noise from the bathroom around 6:30 a.m. 

“I woke up,” John said. “Went to use the bathroom, and it’s the last thing I remember.” 

He fell on the floor and was going into cardiac arrest.  

“It was very scary,” Kelley said. “Seeing him turn blue and having no life at all in him.” 

She screamed for her son to come help.

“I was trying to see if he was going to wake up,” Bryant said. 

His stepfather was not responsive. 

Bryant told FOX8 he rolled John onto his side while Kelley called 911. 

“I don’t even know that I was thinking. It was more of just like react, react,” she said. “I am very grateful and thankful that he was in the house that morning.” 

The telecommunicator asked if John had a pulse Bryant told FOX8 that at the time, his stepfather did not have one. There was no time to waste to try and save him. 

“We’ve got to start CPR, and you know my son’s like ‘OK. move mom. I’ll get it,'” Kelley said. “There was just another higher power watching over us.”

The telecommunicator walked Bryant through the steps. 

“I got certified in eighth grade,” he said. “I kind of knew a little bit of the process, and so I turned him on his back and started CPR compressions.”

The telecommunicator, Bryant and Kelley counted each chest compression until first responders arrived.  

“It felt very long,” Bryant said. 

Greensboro firefighters from Station 40 and paramedics took over within minutes. They used a defibrillator to jolt John’s heart back to life. When he was stable enough, they rushed him to Moses Cone Hospital to be treated. 

“It wasn’t a pleasant experience,” Bryant said. “I don’t want anyone else to go through it, but if it does happen, then you’ve got to step in and do it.”

John is talking and even walking now. He told FOX8 that his family was in the right place at the right time to save his life. 

911 Telecommunicator:

  • Skyler Green

Greensboro Fire Department: 

  • Hayes Meekins
  • Maurice Jones
  • Charles Eller
  • Thomas Alexander

Guilford EMS Paramedics:

  • Katie Henley
  • Kristin Isbell
  • Amy Johnson