An 84-year old Wausau man is dead, after he apparently choked on a piece of steak while celebrating his birthday at a local restaurant Wednesday night.
The Marathon County Sheriff's Department says customers tried to save Donald Builer by administering the Heimlich maneuver but were unsuccessful.
The Wausau Fire Department still encourages people to use the Heimlich if someone is clearly choking and cannot speak.
Paramedics say it's a life-saving technique and is effective if administered correctly.
They say you should put your arms around the person, make a fist with your thumb inside your hand, and push up on their diaphragm to try to clear the airway.
Fire Fighter and Paramedic Jared Thompson says, "That’s what we do when we get on scene and we see someones choking if their truly choking and still conscious we'll do the Heimlich that’s the thing we do."
Medics say if the person is still able to speak or they are coughing don’t use the Heimlich maneuver because it will cause damage.