(CBS) Bears linebacker Jerrell Freeman saved the life of a man in Texas on Sunday by using the Heimlich maneuver on him when he was choking.

Freeman was eating a meal at the airport in Austin, Texas before flying back to Chicago for the start of Bears training camp later this week when he noticed Marcus Ryan was in distress. Freeman didn’t know exactly what was going on initially, the Chicago Tribune reported, but then he hopped into action once he saw an older woman unsuccessfully attempt the Heimlich maneuver. It was the first time Freeman had done the Heimlich in his life.

“I grabbed him and tried to squeeze the life out of him,” Freeman told Chicago Tribune. “You’ve got to push in and up. So I did that and he started throwing up what he was choking on. I asked him if he was all right, and he shook his head like ‘No!’

“I grabbed him again and hit him again with it. And when I put him down the second time, his eyes got big. He was like, ‘Oh my god! I think you just saved my life, man!’ It was crazy.”