A Norfolk Police officer who saved a baby’s life 24 years ago will reunite with the mother and daughter who want to thank him for his heroic actions.
Kodie Ferro was only four-and-a-half months old when her mother, Bunnie, was pushing her stroller as they were leaving a carnival near Ocean View Avenue. As a baby, Kodie suffered from sleep apnea- a potentially fatal sleep disorder which causes the breathing to repeatedly stop and start. She was hooked to a heart rate monitor that sounded when she stopped breathing.
“The alarm went off while we were at the carnival, but I couldn’t hear it because of all the noise,” Bunnie said during an August 7, 1991 interview with the Virginian-Pilot. “As we were leaving, we came up to a crosswalk on Ocean View Avenue where he (the officer) was directing traffic. I heard the tone then.”
Officer Harold “Lucky” Watson was directing traffic at the nearby intersection. When he signaled Bunnie to cross, he noticed something was wrong. He approached Bunnie and Kodie and noticed that Kodie did not look right.
“The baby was blue,” Watson said. “I did what I could. I put her head down and massaged her heart for about two minutes. Then she came around.”
Fast forward 24 years. Kodie published the following post on Facebook attempting to reconnect with the officer who saved her life:
Hello, my name is Kodie, I am 24 years old and I was born in Norfolk – I now live in Ohio. In this photograph, is myself and my mother, another gentleman from the department (who I am assuming was, at this time, the chief of police) with Officer Harry Watkins, a member of the Norfolk City Police Department at that time (on far left) when he was given an award for saving my life when I was about 4-months old in the middle of Ocean View Ave., during the Summer of 1991. I have been trying to reconnect with him for a few years now and would be more than elated if anyone could help me get in contact with this man.
This Friday, Norfolk Police Department has arranged what is expected to be an emotional reunion. Kodie and her mother will be coming from Ohio to re-tell the events in the same place it happened at Ocean View Beach Park. The reunion is set to take place at 9 a.m.