Good Samaritan saves South Bay girl

October 27, 2008 5:39:15 PM PDT
A 6-year-old girl is alive and has her hand back because of a Red Cross trained Good Samaritan. A tragic accident and the quick response by a passerby has Los Gatos and the Red Cross teaming up in an effort to train all residents in first aid.

"I couldn't make sense of it. I couldn't save my child. She was going to bleed to death in front of me," said Erica's mother Allison Rix.

Rix's child is 6-year-old Erica. A pink ribbon is now wrapped around her bandaged reattached left hand.

It was severed last month when a jump rope she was holding around her wrist outside her mother's car window got caught under the rear wheel. Allison remembers the terror.

"I started screaming where's my daughters hand, where's my daughters hand," said Rix.

"She was next to the car screaming and I thought there was an accident or she ran over something," said Good Samaritan Jim Bailey.

Jim Bailey of Los Gatos was driving behind Allison Daves Road. He got out of the car and then saw Erica's bleeding wrist.

"I pulled off my belt I did a slip knot around her arm and I pulled it tight the blood stopped because it was coming out so rapidly," said Bailey.

Erica was rushed to Stanford Hospital. Bailey blushes when he's called a hero, but it was his quick thinking and prior Red Cross first aid training that prevented a fatal tragedy.

"You saved my child and there is nothing I could do to thank you enough," said Rix.

The town of Los Gatos has taken the lesson of this heroic act to heart. On Monday, they announced a plan to offer Red Cross training to Los Gatos residents for half price, $25. They call the effort "Los Gatos prepared."

Barbara Larson is with the Red Cross Santa Clara Valley Chapter.

"We want people to have the skills ahead of time so they can react like Jim did," said Larson.

Seeing Erica smile it's hard to imagine. She still has to undergo at least 18 months of surgeries to get feeling back in her hand. The cost has been astronomical.

"Just ICU was $400,000," said Rix.

There will be a fundraiser for Erica November 16th at the Saratoga Community Center, the funds will be used to help pay for her medical bills.


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