Cop's Quick Thinking Saves Life of 2-Year-Old Boy | NBC Chicago

Cop's Quick Thinking Saves Life of 2-Year-Old Boy

Ofc. Thomas Norberg hailed a hero after reviving Sergio Martinez Real



    (Published Friday, Nov. 5, 2010)

    A grateful family is calling one Chicago police officer a hero for saving the life of 2-year-old boy who'd stopped breathing.

    Officer Thomas Norberg said he was driving down Montrose in the Albany Park neighborhood on Thursday when he noticed a car come up behind him with its lights flashing. 

    "My baby's not breathing! Help me! Help me," Norberg recalled the frantic mother calling out to him.

    The 16-year veteran, using only his instinct, went into action, removing the unresponsive boy. “[He was] slumped over basically with his eyeballs in the back of his head," Norberg said. “I grabbed a baby blanket from the back seat, and spread it out on the sidewalk and I put him on the blanket."

    Norberg said the mother, Maribel Real, told him the child had been ill and was throwing up;  they were rushing him to the hospital but she didn’t know what was wrong.

    "I thought his airway is closed or clogged. So I turned him on his side, kept his head elevated and tapped him on the back," Norberg said.

    "After a short period of this, he began coughing and he was drooling. He came to life a little bit, and his hands and feet began moving and his eyes started to look more normal," the officer said. "I knew we were getting somewhere."

    That's about when Engine No. 124 arrived and paramedics gave the boy, Sergio Martinez Real, oxygen and took his vital signs, said Norberg. The mother, meantime, was kissing and hugging Norberg, thanking him for saving her son, he said.

    Young Sergio was home from Swedish Covenant Hospital later Friday morning, he said.

    "In 16 years, (of being a police officer) I’ve never done anything like this<" said Norberg. "I’ve never, ever run across anything like this."

    When asked how he knew what do it, he said, "I guess it was kinda more instinct ... and common sense. It’s unbelievable. It’s indescribable, the things that you don't know that you will run across each day. Every day is an adventure," he said.

    “I could have saved his life."