NEWSBRIEF: American Red Cross honors Inver Grove Heights hero


submitted photo • From left to right: Nominator, Kristin Lonsbury; Honoree, Virginia Marsh (holding baby Elise); Honoree, Lt. Paul Stricker

On Friday, May 18, the American Red Cross Minnesota Region celebrated its 10th  Annual Heroes Breakfast at the Radisson Blu Hotel. Lt. Paul Stricker from Inver Grove Heights and nurse Virginia Marsh from Crystal were honored as First Responder Heroes.  

Stricker and  Marsh saved the life of 6-week old Elise. Kristin Lonsbury was driving her premature daughter Elise to the doctor when Elise began choking on her vomit. She quickly stopped on the side of the road and tried to figure out what was wrong. That’s when nurse Marsh came over and began conducting CPR.  Stricker also happened to be driving by when he saw the women. He quickly got out of his car and assisted with CPR and communicating with 911 dispatch.  

Out of all the people that where driving by that day on Highway 394, these two heroes didn’t think twice about stopping and rushed to help a mother and child. 

“Virginia ran a fair distance to get to us, arrived on scene with such grace, compassion, and confidence, and then was able to save my child’s life because she just knew what to do,” Lonsbury said. “Paul’s presence on-scene was one of the main reasons why my daughter is alive today. He was calmly assertive and knew exactly what needed to happen in what order. 

With Elise’s every milestone, Kristin is reminded of these two heroes who stopped on the side of the road and selflessly helped her and her daughter out. They provided comfort and checked up on her after the incident. 

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