Press Release: Saving Life of Stranger

September 21, 2009


Red Cross to honor man for saving life of stranger
National Certificate of Merit is highest award given

 KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The American Red Cross will bestow its highest national award, the National Certificate of Merit, on a man whom saved the life of a stranger. Robert Schmidt will receive this prestigious CPR award during a ceremony Tuesday, Sept. 22, at 3 p.m. at the American Red Cross of Greater Kansas City, 211 W. Armour Blvd.

On Feb. 2, 2009, Schmidt was visiting a friend’s workplace. While there, someone screamed to call 911. Schmidt ran to help, finding 70-year-old Robert Gillette on the floor shaking violently. Soon after, Gillette became non-responsive. Schmidt checked for a pulse, found Gillette was not breathing and initiated CPR. After a series of breaths and chest compressions Schmidt was able to get Gillette breathing again and stayed with him until paramedics arrived.

Schmidt completed American Red Cross CPR/AED training on Nov. 14, 2008, through his employer Honeywell FM&T in Kansas City, Mo.

About the Certificate: The Certificate of Merit is the highest award bestowed by the Red Cross and bears the signature of the President of the United States. It is awarded to a nominated individual, who saves or sustains a human life and successfully completes a Red Cross course in First Aid, CPR/AED or aquatics prior to the performance of the lifesaving or life-sustaining act.

Media: Schmidt and his CPR instructor William Cochran will be available for interviews at the ceremony. Gillette will not be able to attend. Please call (816) 721-2504 for more information, or if you are planning to attend.

About the American Red Cross Greater Kansas City Chapter: We are here to serve more than 1.5 million people in a five-county area with disaster preparedness and relief programs, health and safety training, and blood collection and distribution. For information on how the Red Cross is there for the Kansas City community, call (816) 931-8400 or visit


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