By Kevin Rowson (WXIA)
FOREST PARK, Ga -- A Forest Park man owes his life to the quick actions of his mother and the heroics of a Forest Park Police officer.
Keith Haynes, 41, of Forest Park, woke up during the middle of the night Tuesday because he was having trouble breathing.
Linda Tyler said her son called her immediately and she picked him up to take him to Southern Regional Medical Center. "He said mom, please drive fast," she said. "He said mom, I can't breathe."
Tyler was driving along Forest Parkway and when she almost reached Old Dixie Road, her son collapsed against the dashboard. "While I was driving he got stiff, he seized and he just went limp," she said. "He stopped breathing on me."
Tyler was still several miles from the hospital and noticed a police car in the parking lot of a BP gas station. She quickly pulled into the BP and ran into the store to find the police officer.
Within seconds Forest Park police officer Christopher Simmons rushed out of the store to check on her son, who was still in the front seat of her pickup truck. "The lady was pretty upset about her son having some kind of medical problem," Officer Simmons said. "She was screaming that he wasn't breathing."
Simmons said Haynes was not breathing. "I tried to wake him up," he said. "I thought he might be asleep and he didn't have any signs of life."
Officer Simmons said he couldn't't work on Haynes in the truck and it was pouring rain outside. He asked Tyler to help him carry her son inside the store. The rest was all captured on the store's surveillance cameras.
Officer Simmons started CPR while Tyler paced frantically in the store. "And you see on the film I was just walking up and down saying Jesus, Jesus help him," she said. "And I kept asking the officer is he breathing yet?"
Officer Simmons said he started to see signs of life. "After about two or three minutes, I was able to get a good pulse on him," he said.
Keith Haynes was back, back from the dead. By then an ambulance arrived and finished what his mother set out to do; get him to a hospital.
Tyler plans to meet with Officer Simmons. She hasn't seen him since the BP. "I thank him so much from the bottom of my heart for helping me," she said.
Officer Simmons said its part of what makes his job rewarding. "It's an incredible feeling that I can't describe," he said. "To be able to help someone, to save a human life, it's absolutely humbling."
Tyler said doctors told her Keith had an asthma attack. She said he is out of intensive care and recovering well.