IT WAS a twist of fate that may have saved the life of young Elias.

Choking in the arms of his mother Emma and struggling to breathe, Elias was helped by a passing stranger known only as Adam, who responded to Emma's cries for help.

The dramatic incident was highlighted in a recent Thumbs Up where we heard from Elias's grandparents.

After the praise for Adam was published, Emma reached out to let us know Adam was living in the same street as her and her son, and they'd remained in contact since the event that nearly claimed her little boy's life.

Adam insists he did only what any decent person would do.

It was an otherwise normal Tuesday afternoon when Emma sat Elias down to have a sandwich for lunch.

When she noticed the 17-month-old choking she attempted to dislodge the food caught in his throat.

Unable to get the food out Emma panicked, picking up her son and running out to the street for help.

"I tried to get it out myself, tried tipping him upside down and everything but then I started freaking out," Emma said.

"By the time we got outside and I flipped him over he had starting turning blue."

As a single mum new to Toormina, Emma was lost for who to turn to.

"I was basically out on the road trying to get someone to stop," she said.

"There were cars that slowed down to look and kept driving. It was so scary and not one person was stopping; I was absolutely screaming and Elias had stopped breathing."

At that point Adam drove past, turned his car around and raced back down the road to the struggling mother and son.

He managed not only to dislodge the food caught in Elias's throat, but also to keep Emma calm while other passers-by called for an ambulance.

Emma and Elias have grown close to Adam and his family since that day and while Emma and her parents have tried to repay Adam with a gift card, offers to look after his children and countless thank yous, she knows nothing can ever repay the debt of saving her little boy's life.

"It's very hard, especially with him being so humble and not wanting anything in return; I mean how do you say thank you enough?" she said.

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