Dayton TSA officer saves fellow officer from choking

Monday, September 21, 2020
Matthew Edds photo

You never know what to expect when you report for duty with TSA. Most employees never foresee finding themselves in a life or death situation, especially in the TSA breakroom.

Dayton (Ohio) International Airport TSA Officer Matthew Edds was on his way to the breakroom to enjoy a restful lunch. As he opened the door, he saw fellow Officer Kim Grierson in distress.

Edds asked Grierson if she was okay. She gestured that she was choking.

Kim Grierson picture

Edds’ military training immediately kicked in. He administered the Heimlich maneuver and was able to dislodge food that was stuck in Grierson’s throat.

Grierson was shaken and said she was certain that Edds saved her life. Edds’ level head, immediate actions and calm demeanor averted a more serious situation. 

“I noticed that something wasn’t right in the way she was acting, and she wasn’t answering me,” said Edds. “I just did what I needed to do. It worked. All these years of training, and I finally used what I learned.”

Edds has been a valued TSA employee for over nine years, has a calm disposition and is a dependable officer. He isn’t one to seek recognition and does not consider his actions to be heroic.