Natchez transit driver saved wife’s life

Published 12:04 am Monday, September 11, 2017

NATCHEZ — Natchez resident Kenneth Watson stared down at his wife of 20 years, passed out in his arms and in desperate need of help.

That day, Jan. 13, 2017, began typically, as Watson had a doctor’s appointment scheduled before he planned to go his job as a Natchez Transit bus driver.

But while he was at the doctor’s office, Watson received a call from his brother-in-law that Watson’s wife, Daisy, did not seem well.

Email newsletter signup

“She almost fainted while he was there,” Watson said.

Watson came back to check on his wife, bringing her a cold bottle of water and making sure was feeling OK before he returned to work.

After calling to check up on his wife throughout the day, Watson returned home once more to bring his wife some food. As fate would have it, that decision would save Daisy’s life.

Watson was met at the front door by his wife, but in an instant, Daisy lost consciousness.

“As soon as I got home, she just collapsed in my arms,” Watson said.

“I laid her on the couch. I was calling her name, checking her pulse.”

After Daisy remained unresponsive, Watson began to perform CPR.

Watson is certified in CPR as a requirement of his job. At that point, Watson relied on both his training and his faith.

“I called Jesus’ name I don’t know how many times,” he said. “That’s who I needed.”

Eventually, Watson was able to get his wife responsive and sit her up on the couch. As Daisy first regained consciousness, the gravity of the situation struck Watson.

“I just started bawling,” he said. “I seen her open her eyes and calling my name — that did me all the good in the world.”

Watson said an ambulance then transported his wife to the hospital, though she was reluctant to leave her husband’s side.

At the hospital, Watson said a nurse informed him just how fortunate the Watsons were.

“They told me her blood pressure was 39 over 26,” he said.

Anything below 90 over 60 normally is considered low blood pressure. Daisy’s blood pressure was so low, Watson said medical personal were shocked his wife was still alive.

“They don’t know how she made it,” he said.

“The good Lord put me there at the right time and took me through the life-saving experience that we went through.”

Watson said Daisy’s drop in blood pressure resulted from some medication that was “too strong.” He said nothing in her medical history gave any indication that something like this was going to happen.

Today, Watson said Daisy is still recovering, but she has seen progress.

“She’s getting stronger,” he said. “She has good days and bad days … but so far, she’s doing great.”

In August, Watson was honored at a board of aldermen meeting, at which Natchez Mayor Darryl Grennell commended Watson and encouraged others to learn from his experience.

“We hope that others will learn from this and go out and become trained in CPR, because these types of events can occur,” Grennell said.

Though Watson’s ordeal is one he hopes to never encounter again, he also recognizes the importance of his CPR training.

“I’m so thankful for the training we had,” Watson said. “I never thought I’d have to use it, but it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.”