Nursing student from Hillsborough saves man’s life in Red Lobster parking lot

Sarah Friedman of Hillsborough had just started her waitressing shift at the Red Lobster in Bridgewater when someone ran into the restaurant and asked if anyone knew CPR. She saved the man's life.PHOTO COURTESY OF YORK COLLEGE OF PENNSYLVANIA
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Sarah Friedman of Hillsborough had just started her waitressing shift at the Red Lobster in Bridgewater when someone ran into the restaurant and asked if anyone knew CPR. She saved the man's life.PHOTO COURTESY OF YORK COLLEGE OF PENNSYLVANIA

Sarah Friedman stood in the parking lot with adrenaline pumping through her body when a police officer looked at her and said, “You saved that man’s life.”

The York College of Pennsylvania Nursing student, Class of 2023, had just started her Saturday waitressing shift at the Red Lobster in Bridgewater when someone ran into the restaurant and asked if anyone knew CPR, according to information provided by York College.

Friedman, who had just completed her CPR certification during the spring semester at York College, ran out into the parking lot to see if she could help. On the ground was a man who was already turning gray in the face, according to the statement.

“I didn’t even hesitate,” the Hillsborough resident said in the statement, recalling the events that took place on June 5. “I remember my professor telling me, ‘You never know when you’ll be in a position where you’ll need this.’ ”

Friedman admits there have been times when she’s sat in class, taken another test, and wondered how much more she has to learn before she can start putting her skills to use, according to the statement. It doesn’t matter how many times she’s practiced things on a dummy in the simulation labs, she said in the statement. She’s always wanted to get closer to the real thing: to helping someone.

As she administered CPR to the man in the parking lot, she realized how all the things she’d learned at York College were coming into play, according to the statement. Years of learning those skills were being put to work.

While she performed CPR, someone else called 911. A police officer arrived on the scene and was able to give the man oxygen while she continued compressions. Minutes later, when an ambulance arrived and administered Narcan, a nasal spray used for a suspected opioid overdose, the man regained consciousness, according to the statement.

Afterward, Friedman’s manager asked if she wanted to go home.

“I decided to stay and complete my shift,” she said in the statement. “When I’m working in my field, I’ll have things like this happen, and I’ll have to keep working. I’ll have to learn how to get through those moments.”

Friedman was able to speak to the man afterward and learn a little about his life, according to the statement.

“It’s great to see that what you’re learning can impact someone’s life,” Friedman said in the statement. “As I grow as a medical provider and a woman, I want to remember these experiences that shaped me. It’s because of what I know and have worked so hard to learn that I can make a difference.”

With clinicals ahead of her, Friedman hopes to continue to put into practice the things she’s learned at York College. She later hopes to pursue a career as a nurse practitioner.