‘They're Like Soldiers': Chicago's Children Are Learning to Save Lives Amid the Gunfire

Last September, Darrion Johnson’s brother Delmonte, 19, an activist with Chicago anti-violence organization Good Kids Mad City, was shot in the chest and stomach blocks from his home. He died 45 minutes later at a hospital.

Darrion, now 14, was down the street and heard the shots that led to his brother's death, NBC News reported. Today Darrion wonders if his brother might have survived if someone who was nearby had known how to help him.

It was that unanswered question that drove Darrion to attend Good Kids Mad City's first responder training course on Chicago's South Side. He, along with a dozen other teens, practiced putting pressure on a fake bullet wound, checked for a pulse and began two-handed chest compressions on a teen pretending to be a gunshot victim.

The training was a sobering reminder that many young people in Chicago’s most distressed neighborhoods are expected to fend for themselves in the face of gun violence and gang activity.

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