On a mid-June evening, an unsuspecting 19-year-old boy went through an experience that changed him into a man.
As the hours dwindled on June 15, Anson Lemmer was getting ready to finish his shift at Uncle Pizza, a local restaurant in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, and head home for the night. All he had to do was deliver one last order. Little did Lemmer know that instead of delivering pizza he would be delivering a man his life.
Lemmer said the 10 to 15 minutes happened fast. When he pulled up to the house on Valley View Road, he knew something was off because he saw a man turning blue outside of the house. According to the local NBC news station who covered the story, Lemmer said two of the order recipients met him before he could even put his car in park to ask him if he knew CPR.
Lemmer remembered immediately back to the CPR class he had taken a year prior. He got out of his car without hesitation and began performing chest compressions on the man.
Later Lemmer recounted the incident to reporters:
“It’s important to not get caught up in the bystander effect. I felt a couple of ribs break. He’s going to wake up with sore ribs.”
The bystander effect results when an individual is in the presence of others who he/she believes will intervene in an emergency situation, thus discouraging that person from intervening themselves.
After several minutes of performing CPR, Lemmer was successfully able to restore the man’s breathing. He said that the man, whose name has not been released, shook his hand and tipped him even though he no longer wanted the pizza.
When the EMTs arrived from the Glenwood Fire Department they gained control of what was left of the situation and thanked Lemmer for his courageous service. After the bizarre turn of events, Lemmer called his parents and said,
“This has been the craziest pizza delivery ever. I left a pizza boy and came back a pizza man.”
His parents have said they are proud of Lemmer’s courage in stepping up. Lemmer said in a closing statement:
“If I stumble across something like that, I’m going to do anything I can to help.”