Medford, OR, Letter Carrier Clifford Maris III was enjoying a day off last December when a car crashed into the grocery store where he and his wife were shopping.
Maris, a former Air Force combat medic, rushed to check on the driver, who was unconscious after going into cardiac arrest while behind the wheel.
The Postal Service employee and several store workers got the woman out of her vehicle, performed CPR and used an automatic external defibrillator on her until emergency responders arrived and took over.
Medford Fire-Rescue later recognized Maris and store staff members for their life-saving efforts. In fact, staffers had responded to another cardiac arrest at the store less than a week after the car crash.
Melissa Cano, the city’s emergency management coordinator, called both incidents “a true testament to the willingness of those in our community to help a person in need.”
Maris told the local CBS station that he credits his military training with honing his impulse to defuse a crisis and “take care of the problem instead of running away from it.”