Archive for December, 2009

Husband & Cops Save Woman on Mother’s Day

Posted by cocreator on December 29, 2009
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Mary Lundvall had gone into cardiac arrest while getting ready for church. She had collapsed in front of her daughter, Shonna, in an upstairs bedroom.

Mary Lundvall (centre) the Survivor

Mary Lundvall (centre) the Survivor

As if watching your mother go into cardiac arrest isn’t traumatic enough, this happened on Mother’s Day.

When she dialed 911, Shonna was so hysterical that dispatcher Charity Stewart had trouble understanding what she was saying.

Police Sgt. Joe Baird and officers Derek Weinhardt and Tim Vogt were first on scene. Before rushing inside, Vogt grabbed a defibrillator and medical bag from his trunk.

The officers quickly went to work. Weinhardt checked Lundvall’s pulse while Vogt hooked up the defibrillator.

Meanwhile, Baird took Shonna downstairs to try to calm her down.

When Officer Brian McColley showed up, he took Lundvall’s husband, Dennis, aside so the other officers could work. Dennis had been performing CPR when police arrived.

Vogt delivered a shock and within seconds Lundvall had a faint pulse. That’s all it took. The shock had revived her. Soon she was conscious and alert, and by the time an ambulance arrived, Lundvall was talking.

She was rushed to Campbell County Memorial Hospital and later flown by air ambulance to a hospital in Billings, Mont. Vogt stayed by her side right up until a Life Flight airplane whisked her away.

Afterward, Lundvall thanked Vogt, telling him he went “over and above the call of duty.”

In his 18 years in law enforcement, Baird never saw an unresponsive patient snap back as quickly as Lundvall did. When he heard her talking, he almost went into cardiac arrest himself, he joked.

“It was a miracle,” Baird said.

Today, Lundvall is healthy and grateful, especially for the officers who helped save her life.

“God was definitely with us,” Lundvall said.

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Wife & Cops Save Man in Home

Posted by cocreator on December 27, 2009
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“It was a normal Sunday,” Dan Horgan recalled. “We got up, read the paper, made waffles.”

Dan doesn’t remember much more than that.

“He was down at the end of the counter paying bills,” said Lori Horgan, wife of 28 years. “I said something and there was no response. I said something else and there was still no response. I looked up and there he was lying on the counter.

Lori said she thought he was being funny “because he had joked earlier about how the bills were going to kill him.”

She quickly realized Dan wasn’t kidding, though. After she labored to get him down onto the floor, she took his pulse and came up empty-handed. His heart had stopped beating.

Lori then called 9-1-1 and began giving him CPR as she waited for help to arrive.

She estimated it was no more than five minutes before Chaska Police Officer Brady Juell was at their door.

Juell used the AED ( automated external defibrillator )to give Dan a couple of jolts to restart his heart.

Not long after, an ambulance arrived to transport Dan to Ridgeview Medical Center in Waconia where he was stabilized before heading to Abbott Northwestern.

Instead of waking up two days after his cardiac arrest, it took Dan a week to come around.

Since August, his recovery has been speedy. A week after waking up, Dan was discharged to home to regain his strength. He was back full-time to his job as a computer technician just after Labor Day.

While the physical recovery has been challenging, wrapping his head around what happened to him has also been difficult for Dan. He has trouble holding back the tears when he thinks about what Lori and his family went through the week he was in a coma.

“It’s always there, in our minds,” said Lori.

Dan is also thankful for the quick response of the Chaska Police. “By golly, if I get pulled over by that man, I’m gonna get out and hug him,” he said.

“[Juell] was just doing his job, but he saved a life that day,” said Lori. “I’m thankful to be here,” said Dan. “I’m thankful for everything. I’m thankful to be able to go get a tree and just (pause) just to be here.”

Now, with their new lease on life, the Horgans are enjoying every day together. There are only two rules Lori has forced upon Dan.

“He can’t sit at that end of the counter and he’s not allowed to pay bills on Sunday,” she said.

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Volunteer & Cops Save Man at Airport

Posted by cocreator on December 25, 2009
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The Melbourne supervisor of public works and a volunteer firefighter Gary Fricke had arrived at the Des Moines International Airport to pick up his son and daughter-in-law, who were returning from an overseas trip.

Gary Fricke (3rd from left) the Saviour

Gary Fricke (3rd from left) the Saviour

As they were making their way to the baggage claim, he noticed a man lying on the floor of the airport near one of the car rental counters.

He went over and assisted the man, who turned out to be Retired U.S. Air Force Colonel Dennis Ridnouer, who lives in North Carolina.

“He tried to speak and went back out and quit breathing,” Fricke said. “I called for help and I checked his carotid.”

Des Moines police officers Jaime Vanderwert, Vic Gamboa, and Eric Wilson arrived on the scene with a defibrillator, according to Deb Mercer, an employee with the city of Melbourne.

“We feel he should be honored,” she said.

The defibrillator was activated and it worked.

Ridnouer eventually regained consciousness and was transported by ambulance to a Des Moines hospital.

Fricke did not really have a chance to think about what he was doing.

“I just kind of was like ‘Hey, I’ve got to do something.’ I can’t just stand around while this guy lays here and is not breathing'” he said. “The training just kind of kicked in.”

“I thought ‘Oh boy,’ your chances of saving someone – I have been a first responder for 19 years and you very seldom save a guy,” he said. “When I saw they had a defibrillator, there was a lot better chance.”

Fricke said the scene was quite stressful, especially for Ridnouer’s wife, who had left him at the counter to take care of some luggage. When she turned the corner and saw him on the floor, “she kind of lost it but calmed down and was able to give them information about his medical history.”

Ridnouer had a pacemaker put in and is alive today.

“It was a team effort on everyone’s part,” Fricke said. “I’m just glad I was able to help.”

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Nurses & Paramedics Save Student in Elementary School Party

Posted by cocreator on December 25, 2009
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Just after noon, a 7-year-old boy was celebrating at a holiday party with his classmates at the Josiah Quincy Elementary School in Boston, said Matthew Wilder, spokesman for the Boston public schools.

Suddenly, he became unresponsive and went into cardiac arrest, Wilder said. It is unclear what triggered the problem.

School nurses immediately rushed to the classroom where the party was taking place and began performing CPR on the boy, Wilder said.

They also used a defibrillator.

Three minutes later, emergency medical technicians arrived and found the boy was not breathing and had no pulse. Paramedics arrived on the scene a few minutes later.

Emergency workers managed to revive the child, but he was not breathing on his own when they transported him across the street to Tufts Medical Center, according to emergency officials.

“The school nurse really should be praised,” said Jennifer Mehigan, spokeswoman for Boston Emergency Medical Services. “Those quick actions are really what save someone’s life.”

He is still listed as in critical condition.

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Olympic Torch Carrier Saved at Sports Meeting

Posted by cocreator on December 25, 2009
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Pat Doherty and Trevor Tinney were attending an Ontario Hockey Association board meeting in Cambridge Nov. 18 – Doherty as a life member and Tinney as chair of the Central Junior C Hockey League – when Doherty, 81, suffered a heart attack.

Another OHA director, Rick Richardson, a fire chief, immediately began to administer CPR, 30 chest compressions at a time. Tinney assisted by breathing twice into Doherty’s lungs at Richardson’s signal.

“It seemed like forever,” Tinney said Monday, but he estimates the pair kept up their efforts for no more than seven minutes before emergency personnel arrived with a defibrillator and managed to get a pulse.

Doherty was rushed to Cambridge Memorial Hospital where he was given the last rites before being transferred to St. Mary’s Hospital in Kitchener.

“They figured we probably saved him,” Tinney said. “If we hadn’t done anything he probably wouldn’t have made it.”

“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them,” Doherty said. “I don’t want to get kind of weepy about it. But that’s the truth.”

“Just to see his family and how appreciative they were [made for] a very emotional meeting,” Tinney said.

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