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A 1st Infantry Division Artillery Regiment soldier recently saved the life of a Department of Defense worker who was choking on his lunch, according to a news release from the division’s public affairs office.

Spc. Elspeth Barnett, a combat medic from San Diego, was eating with other soldiers from her unit in the dining facility at Camp Doha, Kuwait, when the incident occurred. The release said she saw the man — later identified as Lonnie Allen, a DOD civilian working at Camp Doha — sitting near the end of her table and having difficulty breathing.

Barnett asked if he needed assistance and the man, unable to answer, placed his hand across his neck, indicating distress. Barnett used the Heimlich maneuver, a two-handed squeeze under the breastbone, to immediately dislodge the food.

She then turned the man over to Navy medics, who took him to a base medical clinic.

Barnett, who has been nominated for an Army Commendation Medal, had been assigned to Forward Operating Base Summerall near Bayji, Iraq, until her unit moved recently to Camp Doha, the release said.

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