Collier County Deputy reunited with infant he saved 10 years ago

NAPLES, Fla. -- Ten years after using CPR on a lifeless infant, saving the child's life, a Collier County deputy was reunited with the healthy boy.

According to the Collier County Sheriff's Office, in April 2007, Cpl. Brian Wiedel was handed a lifeless infant while responding to a medical call in East Naples.

Cpl. Wiedel performed lifesaving CPR on the boy on the hood of his patrol car.  “He took a big gasp,” Cpl. Wiedel recalled. “He stretched out his arms. He had shallow breaths and I could feel a pulse.”

Cpl. Wiedel would go on to testify at the child abuse trial of the man who was later convicted of shaking the boy so violently it caused serious injury.

Had it not been for Cpl. Wiedel’s quick response and heroic actions, the boy would have surely died, the prosecuting attorney told the court at trial.

It was the only time Cpl. Wiedel has ever performed CPR on a child, and he has always wondered what became of the boy.

He got his answer Wednesday when he was reunited with the boy during a private meeting at the Estates substation. The boy wanted to meet the deputy who saved his life. CCSO is not identifying the boy because that information is protected under Florida law.

The boy smiled from ear to ear when he walked into the room where Cpl. Wiedel was waiting for him. The boy shook the hand of his life-saver and gave him a “high five.”

“You’ve grown a lot since I’ve seen you,” Cpl. Wiedel said. “You’re getting tall.”

Cpl. Wiedel and the boy’s mother shared a tearful embrace. “You’re my hero,” she told him.

She said her son didn’t suffer any lasting injuries. “They tell me he’s a miracle child,” she said.

The boy asked Cpl. Wiedel if he could bring him to school for show-and-tell. Cpl. Wiedel smiled and said he’d be honored.

The reunion was something Cpl. Wiedel won’t soon forget.  “It was pretty powerful,” he said. “This kid reaching out to me is a reminder that something I did years ago does matter. It’s pretty cool.”

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