"Clint saved my life," Steve John told The Carmel Pine Cone, the local newspaper where the actor once served as mayor in the 1980s.
During a reception late Wednesday for a golf tournament in Carmel-by-the-Sea, John was eating and chatting, only to get a piece of cheese stuck in his windpipe.
"Suddenly, I couldn't breathe. It was as bad as it could have been," recalled the director of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am golf tournament in California.
"Clint came up behind me, and he knew exactly what to do."
The award-winning actor and director told the local paper that he saw in John "that look of panic people have when they see their life passing before their eyes."
Eastwood, 83, moved behind John to perform the Heimlich maneuver. "I gave him three good jolts, and that got it out," the mega star recalled.
"And then I made him drink a big glass of water with a bunch of lemon squeezed in it."
Eastwood, who most famously inhabited the role of "Dirty Harry," confessed he'd never performed the Heimlich maneuver in real life before: "except to practice."