The young boy received a video message from Cena himself after news of his heroics made headlines.
An 8-year-old boy from Pennsylvania is being hailed a hero after his quick actions helped save his younger sister's life. According to ABC affiliate WNEP, young Jaxson Dempsey was sitting in the backseat of his father's car with his 20-month-old sister Leila late last month when he noticed the young girl choking on a McDonald's chicken nugget. "We were driving to my haircut, and I noticed she was starting to choke from a chicken nugget from McDonald's." Speaking to CBS affiliate WYOU, the youngster admitted that the sight "made me feel scared because I thought she was going to die. But then this thing came into my mind. I told my dad to pull over and I started to pat her back."
Jaxson Dempsey, 8, saved his sister's life after watching the pro wrestler demonstrate CPR on a Nickelodeon prank show. https://t.co/7vdlKXqFb4— HuffPost Women (@HuffPostWomen) April 2, 2021
The "thing" Jaxson remembered was an episode of the Nickelodeon hidden camera prank show, The Substitute, which features stars going undercover as substitute teachers before unsuspecting kids who have no idea they're in the presence of someone famous. The particular episode that came to the second grader's mind in that critical moment was one starring WWE Superstar and actor John Cena where the celeb teaches a class of young students the basics of CPR on a dummy named Chuck.
Day 184: Let’s have more nice things...— Brad Ferguson (@BradFergus0n) April 4, 2021
...Like 8 year old, Jaxson Dempsey who saved his baby sister’s life who was choking on a chicken nugget by remembering John Cena teaching the basics of CPR on a Nickelodeon show.#MoreNiceThingshttps://t.co/t6jDhz8dgU
With the skills learned from the episode in mind, Jaxson quickly leaned his sister forward and using the heel of his hand, slapped her back between the shoulder blades, ultimately dislodging the stuck chicken nugget in about 30 seconds. "Her face was bright purple and red, and she wasn't really breathing. Jaxson sprung into action before I even opened the door," said dad Matt Dempsey. "I couldn't believe it. I mean, he's always been a really good big brother, but I never knew he would know what to do with that."
Jaxson Dempsey saved his sister from choking on a chicken nugget and Wednesday night, he was treated to a parade of fire trucks, recognizing him for his efforts. Eyewitness News reporter Caroline Foreback will have more on this on Eyewitness News at 11.https://t.co/5o1wGbHW2u— Eyewitness News (@wbrewyou) April 1, 2021
"He amazes us every day, you know—some of the things he says and does, and his actions. We're simply blessed to have the child that he is, the things that he does for his family, his friends, for his little sister. He's a good big brother," Dempsey gushed about his son. He revealed he was grateful for his son's quick actions, as Leila had remained unusually calm throughout the ordeal. "I couldn't hear her because... she wasn't coughing, she wasn't panicking," he said. "She just had no air going through. She wasn't breathing. Thank god Jaxson was there because, without him, I don't know if Leila would be here."
Eight-year-old Jaxson Dempsey saved his baby sister’s life, using a skill he learned on TV. Wednesday, he noticed Layla was choking on a chicken nugget while their dad was driving, and sprang into action.https://t.co/GvryyIzNyy— Eyewitness News (@wbrewyou) March 30, 2021
Jaxson, who lives with his family in Hazleton, said he feels "like a hero so much in [his] heart." The youngster also urged all children to learn CPR in case they find themselves in a similar situation. "I would say thank you [to John Cena] for being on that show," he said. "It taught me a lot about how to save someone's life." After news of the youngster's heroics spread, Nickelodeon praised Jaxson in a statement, reported E! News. "Everyone at Nickelodeon is so proud of Jaxson and his heroic actions, and we are honored to be a part of such a remarkable story of good news and courage! Yay for Jaxson and Leila!!!" Nickelodeon spokesman David Bittler said.
THE CHAMP IS HERE: Jaxson Dempsey, who saved his sister from choking, received a thank you video from WWE Superstar and actor John Cena. https://t.co/JfvLa5emaU— WNEP (@WNEP) April 2, 2021
The young boy was celebrated with a local parade, in which over a dozen firetrucks came by to flash their lights and blow their sirens in his honor. Jaxson also received a video message from Cena himself, reports WNEP. "Hey Jaxson, this is 16-time WWE champ and Peacemaker John Cena saying hello. Now I heard a story about you, and it really touched my heart. A story that in a time of crisis, you were brave enough to take action. Doing so, you saved your little sister's life. I wanted to commend you because the actions of a true hero are those who do act in a time of crisis. Usually, when bad things happen, one of the toughest things for all of us to do is to take action," Cena said in the video. "You jumped right in helped out the best you could. Doing so, you saved your sister's life. I really want to say thank you for being you, Jaxson. Thank you for being an inspiration; thank you from all of us."