His Name is Colby Cook, but You Can Call Him a Hero

A West Des Moines junior high student's quick thinking saved a classmate's life.

Colby Cook. Courtesy photo.
Colby Cook. Courtesy photo.

A West Des Moines junior high student quickly performed the Heimlich maneuver earlier this month and saved a classmate’s life.

Colby Cook, an eighth grader at Indian Hills Junior HIgh School in Clive, sprang into action after a friend, Kyle Randolph, choked on a meatball sandwich at lunch, the Des Moines Register reports.

Randolph stood up and put his hand to his throat to indicate that a meatball had lodged in his throat and he couldn’t breathe. Cook, 13, said he performed the Heimlich without really thinking about it. He hadn’t been trained in the lifesaving technique, but had seen it on television enough to know the basics.

The meatball shot out of Randolph’s mouth and the two nonchalantly went about their day. Cook went to his next class and Randolph reported to the school nurse.

“They just took care of it themselves,” Indian Hills Principal Shane Christiansen said. “They didn’t say anything. It was the end of the week, and they just went home.”

When Cook told his parents, Clay and Teri Cook, that he had saved a life that day in school, they wondered if their son was exaggerating, out of character as that would have been.

“It’s not that we didn’t believe him, but you know, it was a pretty incredible story,” Clay Cook told the newspaper. “We had to think, OK, did this really happen?”

But then Randolph’s parents came to the home to thank Colby for his spontaneous heroics, “it clicked,” Clay Cook said. “This is for real.”
Maggie September 21, 2013 at 12:27 AM
What a great friend and humble too! Way to be Colby!
Jamie September 21, 2013 at 03:56 AM
Way to go Colby! Love hearing where young people do something extraordinary to help another, rather than tearing up and tearing down.
Cindy Halpern September 21, 2013 at 08:49 AM
Maybe he will go on to be in the medical field. People who go into that field show early promise. At any rate, he is definitely the right person to handle an emergency.
Daria Novak September 21, 2013 at 02:37 PM
Medical field... no.... we need him in politics! He's shown himself to be someone willing to stand up and do what is needed and right and not develop a huge ego along the way. It was about helping a friend, not gaining notoriety for himself.
Noel Royse September 21, 2013 at 05:50 PM
He is a leader, a true leader who expects no recognition for his accomplishments.
bigdog September 22, 2013 at 12:51 PM
Bravo Colby.
Sheila DeFonzo September 22, 2013 at 10:21 PM
Colby Cook, you are a terrific friend, and a very humble Hero!! Your an awesome inspiration to those around you!! Well done young man!!
gmalone September 23, 2013 at 08:20 AM
Attaboy, Colby! You are a true friend, young man. And, Kyle, so glad to know you're doing well after such an ordeal. PS- To the West Des Moines Patch editors: Try being a little more subtle with your advertising selection next time, why don't you? Was it really so necessary to surround THIS article with "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2" and "Swallow Falls" Patch ads? How crass and thoughtless.
WiseOneDoll September 23, 2013 at 01:13 PM
What a wonderful boy!!! We are so proud of you!
Martha Cameron Cobb September 23, 2013 at 02:09 PM
Amazing what kids can do now-a-days! Colby is a true hero.
Mark September 23, 2013 at 06:22 PM
"If Obama had a son..." he would be NOTHING like Colby Cook! I say we put Colby in the White House and Obama in prison.


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