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Toddler who was choking on LEGO piece rescued by Riverhead sergeant, RVAC paramedic

A Riverhead Town police sergeant and paramedic with the Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance Corps helped rescue a toddler who had a LEGO piece lodged in his throat Monday morning.

Police received a 911 call of a child choking at Pine Tree Day Nursery on Roanoke Avenue shortly before 9 a.m. Riverhead Sgt. Jill Kubetz arrived at the nursery within one minute of the call, police said, and retrieved the infant from the staff.

Sgt. Kubetz began to perform airway obstruction procedures, police said, by giving the child back thrusts to dislodge the object in the lower airway. Sgt. Kubetz could then see what appeared to be a large LEGO blocking the toddler’s airway.

The resuscitation efforts led to the obstruction moving enough so the child had limited airflow again.

At that time, Christine Klassert, an RVAC paramedic, arrived and was able to remove the 2-inch LEGO piece as Sgt. Kubetz held the child.

The child was transported to Stony Brook University Medical Center for evaluation and was released later in the day, police said.

The father and son visited Riverhead Town Police headquarters after the hospital “to express their gratitude to the officers and ambulance responders for their actions this morning,” police said.

In 2015, Sgt. Kubetz was promoted to be the department’s first female sergeant.

Correction: The child is almost 2 years old and therefore is a toddler, not an infant.