'Phenomenal' Cole Harbour boy honoured for saving mother's life

Metro Halifax thebuzz@tc.tc
Published on April 29, 2014

Jesse Good, 14, with his mother Ronda Stuart-Good together after receiving the Canadian Red Cross Rescuers Award on Monday.                 

©Patrick McKenna - Metro Halifax


When Jesse Good received a Rescuer Award from the Canadian Red Cross on Wednesday, he also received some attention he didn’t sign up for.

The soft-spoken 14-year-old didn’t know where to look as photographers gathered to get a picture of Good with his certificate, which he was awarded after he saved his mom’s life with CPR.

“What he did was amazing. I probably wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for him,” his mother said proudly.

Ronda Stuart-Good, 43, was sitting at the kitchen table in her Cole Harbour home when she collapsed with heart failure on Feb. 15.

When Good saw her slide out of the chair, he called 911 and began performing CPR.

He continued to perform CPR for about five minutes until paramedics arrived and used multiple shocks from a defibrillator to restart her heart.

“I’m just so grateful to be here and happy to be alive, and I’ll cherish the rest of the days I have with my boys,” Stuart-Good said.

Good had received CPR training two years earlier in a babysitter course his mom signed him up for because he has a younger brother.

“I hoped he’d never have to use it,” she said.

The award honours the efforts of non-professional rescuers or off-duty first responders who go out of their way to save a life.

Good said he’s happy he had the training under his belt.

“I think I would’ve still been able to call 911, but I don’t know if I would’ve been able to do CPR,” he said.

Yelena Zuck, the Red Cross instructor who taught Good, said a surprising number of people freeze when calling 911, and that number’s higher for performing CPR.

“I love what I do regardless, but having Jesse being able to step up is just an unbelievable thing. … When you look at the stats for CPR, I think he certainly defied the odds,” she said. “I think he is absolutely phenomenal.”

Good’s aunt Lisa Stuart said that everyone’s on the road to recovery, including Good’s mother, though she’s still off work.

“Jesse’s kind of down-played his role in what happened here, but for us it really has been a miracle,” Good’s aunt, Lisa Stuart, said.

She said it’s important to the family to share the story so that both children and adults will take CPR training.