Sharp Professional Nurses Network RN in the Right Place at the Right Time
Everyday Hero Micaela Mvongo, RN, Saves a Life
On August 13, 2015, Registered Nurse Micaela Mvongo was enjoying her day off with her two kids at Mission Bay. She was relaxing at the beach with a book in hand when she heard a commotion nearby. When she looked in the direction of the sounds, she saw a lifeguard pull a young girl out of the water.
Without even a second of hesitation, Mvongo dropped her book and went into what she calls “nurse mode.” She took off running towards the lifeguard and motionless child.
The lifeguard had started CPR by the time she reached them. When Mvongo identified herself as a nurse and offered to help, the lifeguard let her take over.
“The child had no heart rate at all. My instincts took over. I didn’t think about it. I never took my eyes off her. I didn’t know who was around me while I was doing CPR. I didn’t know where the child’s parents were, I didn’t even know where my children were. I know I heard sirens at some point.
“I did do CPR until I actually felt her heart beat under my hand. I get the chills every time I think back to that moment. We put her in rescue position and she slowly woke up and came back.”
News sources would later refer to her as the off-duty nurse who did CPR and rescued a four-year-old from Mission Bay.
Mvongo is a registered nurse and a member of Sharp Professional Nurses Network (SPNN). She started her career 12.5 years ago, working in Labor & Delivery and Antepartum before taking on her current position in Recovery.
“It was something. I’m a nurse but that was the very first time I’ve done CPR on a four-year-old. I’m glad I was there but you just never want to have to do that.”
As the one year anniversary of the date approaches, Mvongo humbly says, “I’m lucky I was there when this all happened and I’m happy that it turned out the way it did.”
Many people have called Micaela Mvongo a hero since that day at the beach but in speaking about the incident, she says, “I am the lucky one to have been at Mission Bay that day.” To her, it is unimaginable what might have happened had she not been there.
Her efforts to save the child at the beach were no surprise to her coworkers and fellow union sisters at Sharp Professional Nurses Network (SPNN). SPNN RN Annette Noa works closely with Micaela Mvongo and wanted to properly recognize her for her bravery in saving the four-year-old child’s life. But to that, Mvongo says, “Having saved her was enough. I can’t imagine what our lives would be like if it hadn’t gone that way.”
After hearing of her selfless and courageous actions, SPNN nurse Isa Contreras remarked, “Micaela also goes by ‘Cae.’ Cae is not only a dedicated nurse but a devoted loving mother and true soccer fan! I was not surprised to hear how she jumped right in to help the child on the beach. It is her nature to help and be loving. To have her inherent skills shine during any crisis at any time, anywhere, proves her to be a true hero – to be a true nurse.”
We should not wait for tragedies or near-tragedies to recognize the outstanding contributions nurses make to the well-being of countless individuals. Nurses are everyday heroes in the efforts they make on behalf of patients and the community.
You never know when you’ll need a nurse and let’s hope you have someone like Micaela Mvongo nearby in your moment of need.