Happy Hooligan helps save son’s life

  • Published
  • By Capt. Penny Ripperger
  • 119th Wing Public Affairs
"Kids will be kids and they're going to do crazy things", said Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Jacobson, 119th Wing as he described his son at a news conference that took place at Innovis Health today.

On April 1 Jacobson found his son, Karson without a pulse hanging from a rope swing. The 10-year old boy had been playing on the swing that is attached to the rafters in their garage. Immediately upon finding his child, Jacobson performed CPR until the paramedics arrived.

"This is one of those things that we're not talking about minutes making a difference, we're talking about seconds," said Dr. Tony Hamilton, emergency room physician at Innovis Health. "Dad knew what to do. He got Karson down, started CPR and started oxygenating him right away. Those first few seconds is what made all the difference."

Karson was admitted into the intensive care unit where he was induced into a coma to control brain swelling. No one was sure of the extent of brain injury until he started waking up five days later.

"When they wake up, you find out you either have a save or you don't," said Dr. Tim Mahoney, surgical doctor at Innovis Health.

Karson started waking up on Monday, but Tuesday was when his family and doctors began to see tremendous recovery.

"What we see in this remarkable young man is that this week he has gotten better and better and he will soon be the boy he was," said Mahoney.

Mohoney attributes the CPR Jacobson performed on Karson and the quick response of FM Ambulance to the boy's successful recovery.

"It was those critical 15 minutes and the dad did all the right things and held it together," said Mahoney.

At the news conference, Karson who was shy in front of the cameras quietly talked about how he was looking forward to seeing his dog, Daisy and thanked everyone for being so supportive.

Jacobson continued with his comments, "I have so many people to thank, of course the N.D. Air National Guard for giving me the training, all the doctors and nurses here and everyone's prayers and thoughts."

When asked about this training and how he knew how to perform CPR, Jacobson explained that CPR is part of the general training that everyone receives at the 119th Wing. He couldn't remember very much of the actual incident, but described himself as being in 'auto-pilot' when he was performing CPR on his son.

Mohoney kept the news conference light-hearted, "I keep running into the Guard all the time- I tell ya!" he said, evoking laughter in the crowd. In addition to being a doctor, Mohoney is also the Deputy Mayor for the city of Fargo and has worked with the Guard on many events, to include the recent spring flooding in the area.

Today the Jacobson family will finally get to go home, in their parting comments they described the last week as a blur.

"I was expecting the worst right from the start, so it is very surreal that he has come out so well. I am just very thankful. It's a great feeling to see him awake and his big smile. It's the best feeling in the world," said Jacobson.

Karson's mom, Karen Jacobson made one of the final comments, "He's just our little miracle," a statement that no one in the room could deny.

For more information about this news release, contact Penny Ripperger, 119th Wing public affairs officer at 701-451-2194.