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Father of Nationals pitcher Joe Ross saves fan with Heimlich at Giants game

The biggest save of Saturday’s Giants-Nationals game occurred in the lower box behind home plate.

A woman began choking, and her friend tried helping her out, but the situation was getting more serious. Dr. Willie Ross, the father of MLB veteran Tyson Ross and Nationals pitcher Joe Ross, sprung to action.

“I went over to check and she couldn’t talk,” Ross said during the game at Oracle Park, Ross on hand to watch his son’s team. “She had three pieces of hot dog lodged in there.”

Ross, a pediatrician at Stanford Hospital who trained in ER medicine, positioned himself behind the woman, who was standing. He performed the Heimlich Maneuver and got one piece out and checked to see if she was OK, and she still could not talk.

He did it again, and she couldn’t talk. He did it a third time.

“The third piece came out the size of my thumb — like the first knuckle — and then she said, ‘I can talk,'” said Ross, who wore a Nationals cap and got a big round of applause from the Giants fans surrounding him.

The woman, herself a recently retired nurse who worked in Oakland, Ross said, was embarrassed but thankful.

Ross, who raised his children in Berkeley, has saved at the ballpark before. At a San Leandro field, he saw a woman in distress and recognized she was having a stroke. He called an ambulance and got her help, so the career count is two saves for Willie Ross.


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