Wawa South Jersey employees save lives of customers in need

MILLVILLE, New Jersey (WPVI) – “It’s been a pretty normal day for a 16-hour shift,” said Wawa employee John Wallop.

Wallop, 19, says he enjoys working. He especially enjoys his job behind the Wawa snack bar on the corner of West Main and Sharp Streets in Millville, New Jersey. It put money in his pocket when he finished his senior year of high school.

But the special double shift he does on December 17, 2021, requires more work than usual.

“I’m pretty tired,” he said. “I was making sandwiches and two strangers ran up to me like, ‘Hey, hey, there’s a girl having a seizure in the bathroom.'”

Wallop, a person who likes to act and help others, runs to the bathroom and discovers a woman who is not breathing. Without hesitation, he performed the CPR technique he had learned a few years ago under the guidance of his grandmother.

He then checked the woman’s pulse.

“She, you know, passed me by in a second,” he said. “You know, she died for me in a second.”

But Wallop did not concede a goal. He continued CPR until the woman started coughing. Within about seven minutes, the EMT arrived and saved her life.

“And if I hadn’t done what I did, she wouldn’t have done it,” Wallop said.

Wallop’s mother, Calvina, is extremely proud but also has high expectations of her son. It was her late mother who sparked John’s interest in helping others.

“Grandma takes the kids every summer and she takes John to CPR class,” she said. “If she’s definitely alive, man. She’s certainly honored.”

Wallop was recognized by his friends and classmates when his story began appearing in the local newspapers. He also received a Pillar of the Community Hero Award presented by the Positive Vibes Community Team.

Wallop was very pleased with the whole experience and wants to continue helping others.

“I’m thinking about joining the police force,” he said. “I believe we need more EMTs, doctors and law enforcement there.”

Wallop looks forward to completing his studies and pursuing a full-time job at Wawa while awaiting his next steps in further education. He encourages all young people to learn CPR because, despite their job description, they never know when they might need it.

“Some things in life, you know, you just don’t know when it’s over,” he said. “So everything is a valuable lesson.”

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