“My son is not breathing.”
Seconds after a distraught Texas father uttered those chilling words to a 911 operator, Officer Chase Miller was on his way.
He didn’t have to respond; the emergency dispatcher was already sending paramedics to the KFC in Granbury, Tex., where a 3-year-old boy was unresponsive and his sobbing mother was screaming his name: “Brayden, Brayden!”
But Miller — who just happened to be listening to the EMS dispatcher radio at the time — didn’t wait for the paramedics to arrive; instead, he rushed to the scene, knowing it was a short drive away.
A dash cam video captured at the scene and later posted on YouTube by the city of Granbury shows Miller pulling into the parking lot to find every parent’s worst nightmare playing out: A terrified mother holding her toddler’s limp body as the boy’s father and several other people attempt to revive him.
Video shows Miller calmly approaching the woman, grabbing her child and laying the boy on the ground, where he begins to perform CPR. The mother steps away, unable to watch while the boy’s father kneels a few feet away with his hands near his face.
“Just trying to get him breathing,” Miller later recalled to NBC-DFW. “Everything else that’s going on around you doesn’t matter at that point.”
At the scene that night, chances were that Miller’s decisions in the next minute would either save a child’s life or let that life slip through his fingers. Police said the officer remained calm the entire time and even instructed the father on how to take over so he could retrieve a CPR mask from his car.
“He responded exactly like we would hope an officer would respond,” Deputy Granbury Police Chief Jim Marshall said. “He was calm, and I truly believe that his calm demeanor helped stabilize the parents a little bit. At one point, he needed the father to take over chest compressions while he returned to his patrol vehicle.”
“Officer Miller knew from his training that the child would need a breathing mask to survive,” Marshall added.
Miller returned to the boy and continued performing CPR as the child’s helpless parents watched. With each second, it seemed, the intensity of the moment compounded.
Though the video doesn’t show it, Marshall said Miller performed CPR for about three minutes.
And then, just like that, the boy began breathing.
He was taken to a hospital, where he has fully recovered after suffering from a seizure and a high fever at the time of the emergency.
“I thought my life was over when it happened,” Brayden’s mother, Bethany Hoover, told NBC DFW. “I mean, he is my life.”
On Tuesday, Granbury Mayor Nin Hulett presented Miller with a lifesaving award.
There to greet him was the little boy he rescued: Brayden.
“Go give him a hug,” the boy’s mother instructed, sending Brayden to embrace Miller.
“It feels good to know that he’s all right,” Miller said, according to NBC DFW. “I’m very thankful.”
As it turns out, the boy’s favorite cartoon character is a K-9 officer named Chase on “Paw Patrol,” his mother told police.
Miller, the hero officer, gave Brayden a toy police dog, according to ABC News.
“Officer Miller’s exceptional performance reflect great credit upon himself, the Granbury Police Department and the city of Granbury,” police said.
Marshall, the deputy police chief, said Miller “is an extremely humble man, and he doesn’t consider himself a hero. We found out he didn’t even tell his wife about saving the child’s life when he got home that night. In his mind, he was just doing his job.”