Bartender rewarded with generous gift, after saving mans life


A Bethesda bartender got an early Christmas gift, after saving a customer's life at the Oakville Grille and Wine Bar

"It is a miracle that everybody should know," said co-owner Abby Ansari.

It all started on December 10, with a customer who was in need of help. A piece of steak was stuck in the customer's throat.

"Basically, he started turning blue. It was really bad," said bartender Darko Stankovic.

That's when Stankovic rushed over to the choking man and performed the Heimlich Maneuver.

"I saw the hostess trying to call 911. It was just the moment that you are making the decision and basically (running) there to try to help someone," said Stankovic.

After a short time, the former Lifeguard's use of the technique was successful. "That is something that you should be doing and not thinking about the material stuff," said Stankovic.

The customer, who wants to remain anonymous, wanted to express his gratitude in multiple ways. He sent Stankovic a card and a check, with a generous amount.

"On the card as he wrote, he's happy that he's having one more Christmas with his family," said Stankovic. "To me, this is what Christmas is all about, about giving about love, about what happened here," said Ansari.

Ansari now requires that all employees are trained on the Hemlich Maneuver.

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