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Quick-thinking staff members save priest’s life when they administer CPR

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Faith without works isn't dead at Bartlett Catholic Schools.

Just one month ago, principal D. Aur fought to get his entire staff CPR certified. Even though by law, only pre-kindergarten teachers are required to get certified.

"Why not get the whole school not just pre-k. Anything might happen to any of the students, whether it's eighth grader or pre-kindergarten," D. Aur said.

The Bartlett Fire Department taught the staff, and Bartlett City Schools paid for the training that quickly paid off.

"God directs us. We just do it. It's in his hands, so the whole thing was meant to be," D. Aur said.

The principal admits that he thought the training would help during student emergencies. But it was during a staff retreat that the training was tested.

Father David Knight, 87, passed out just before everyone sat down for communion.

"We were there within seconds. We resuscitated Father Knight," D. Aur said.

Abe Abuelouf, an eighth grade teacher at Saint Ann, knew what to do when Father Knight stopped breathing and didn't have a pulse.

"I started thumping on his chest. Every time I said, 'Oh. Please God. Not now," he said.

The rest of the staff did as they were trained. They called 911, cleared his airway and stayed calm until Father Knight finally came too.

"When he started opening his eyes, I knew he was coming back," Abuelouf said.

The teacher says it all happened so quickly. And when a life is on the line, seconds matter most.

Father Knight is now recovering at home.

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