Nfld. & Labrador

Toddler still in hospital after CPR in a taxi, parents thank responders

The father of a 17-month-old who became unresponsive while in a taxi in St. John's says his son is still recovering in hospital, and he wants to thank everyone who helped saved the boy's life.

Rescued baby

7 years ago
Duration 1:36
Interview with the father who's baby was saved by a quick thinking cab dispatcher.

The father of a 17-month-old who became unresponsive while in a taxi in St. John's says his son is still recovering in hospital, and he wants to thank everyone who helped saved the boy's life.

Jason Roddan says he, his wife, and toddler Christopher were in a Jiffy Cab headed to get groceries when the toddler stopped breathing.

"He had no heart rate, he wasn't breathing at all, so I ripped him out of the car seat and put him in the passenger side and started doing CPR for about 15 minutes before first responders actually arrived and were able to take over," said Roddan.

I was scared, mom was scared, but we had to take the necessary precautions to kind of make sure that we could keep him alive at that point.- Jason Roddan

CBC News reported last week that the child had become unresponsive, and the dispatcher for Jiffy Cabs relayed CPR instructions over the cab radio until an ambulance got to the scene.

Roddan said his son has an underlying genetic condition that caused his kidneys to fail when he was about three weeks old, and is currently on dialysis to treat kidney issues.

However, the family has never gone through anything quite like what happened Jan. 23.

"It was definitely an intense experience, to say the least. I was scared, mom was scared, but we had to take the necessary precautions to kind of make sure that we could keep him alive at that point," said Roddan.

Jason Roddan says he doesn't have a clear memory of what happened when his son stopped breathing while the family was in a taxi, just remembers performing CPR until an ambulance arrived at the scene. (CBC)
At the time, Roddan said he wasn't aware of what was going on around him or the conversation taking place over the cab radio.

"I vaguely remember hearing, I guess it was the dispatcher trying to coach me through CPR and stuff and I was just kind of there in the moment."

Since the incident, Christopher has been recovering at the Janeway Children's Hospital in St. John's.

Roddan said there was a few moments when the family and doctors were worried, but added Christopher has been improving a lot since Friday.

He added that without the response from everyone involved, things would have been much worse.

"I definitely personally would like to thank the drivers, the dispatcher Jay, the paramedics who actually started doing the resuscitation before getting to the Janeway, and of course the amazing staff here at the Janeway," said Roddan.

"If it wasn't for the way that all of us reacted to the situation, we would be grieving right now and from the bottom of our hearts, from the bottom of our family's hearts, I have to thank you."

With files from Zach Goudie

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