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Army medic saves life of man who suffered allergic reaction to seafood

Seth Walker was nearly lifeless when schoolmate Logan Carmichael rushed to his aid Friday night in the alley behind Necce's restaurant. (Sarah Smith / Enterprise)

It wasn't the floorshow planned for Necce's Authentic Italian Eatery Friday night, but it sure was full of drama.

An Army medic on leave rushed to save a restaurant worker's life at the Park Rapids eatery.

"Everything came together just perfectly," said Seth Walker on Monday. "I felt like I got hit by a bus but I'm feeling a lot better now."

Walker, the unintended lead actor, was washing dishes at Necce's when he started feeling sick.

"The dishwasher was going to be late so I was helping out," he said. "I have a seafood allergy that I knew I had if I ingest it. Apparently it's contact as well.

"I started feeling not too good so I went out back to catch some air.

"I rang the doorbell because I'd locked myself out."

A waiter came out.

"The last thing I said was, 'I hurt,' and then I collapsed," Walker recalled.

In the dining room, Logan Carmichael sat with his parents having dinner. He picks up the story.

"Denese Jokela comes running out and she tapped my dad on the arm and said, 'Do you know medical stuff?'"

"He said no and I jumped up. Apparently one of the employees was having an allergic reaction to shell fish."

It was the dreaded anaphylactic reaction all the TV commercials warn about.

"I went back there (into the kitchen) and they'd already given him the EpiPen," Carmichael said, referring to a shot of epinephrine doctors prescribe for patients with extreme allergies. It's supposed to stop the attack. It failed.

The restaurant workers panicked, according to diners.

"I got him set out, got his airway opened up, started him on oxygen. When the paramedics got there we got him up and into the ambulance," Carmichael said nonchalantly.

His parents were anything but.

"He was calm, cool and collected," said mom Connie Carmichael. "He knew exactly what to do. I'm very proud of that boy.

"When Denese came out to say somebody was having a shellfish reaction, Logan picked up his crutches. I've never seen anybody crutch that fast before," Connie said.

Logan was home on leave because he'd recently undergone ankle surgery. He returns to his unit later this month.

Seth woke up at 9 p.m. in the hospital. "I had to piece together what happened," he said. "Three to four different people were telling me the story."

Logan had grabbed a police officer's oxygen tank, put it on the unconscious man and had Seth stabilized by the time the ambulance arrived.

It turns out the two men were high school friends.

"Seth came over to the house on Saturday and thanked him," Connie said.

"He was just beside himself, he was so thankful," she said of Seth.

"You saved my life," Seth told Logan appreciably.

"I don't know if he'd have made it if Logan hadn't been there but I asked Logan later and he said, 'Mom, he was in really tough shape when I got there.'"

Logan shrugged off comments that he was a hero.

More importantly, he said, "the food was fantastic!"

Seth said on weekends, the restaurant has started featuring live entertainment.

But it won't be him.

Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.

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