Archive for June, 2012

Fellow Golfers Save Elder Partner on Golf Course

Posted by cocreator on June 26, 2012
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Father-of-two Dave Pugh, 39, of Mold, sprang into action when Trevor Slinger, 76 and his playing partner, collapsed and stopped breathing at Mold Golf Club.


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Mr Pugh phoned an ambulance and sprinted to the clubhouse to get a defibrillator machine while Mr Slinger was in the care of fellow golfers Joannie Adams and Elaine Concannon.

It took three shocks before Mr Slinger began breathing again.

He has since spent six weeks in hospital and undergone a multiple heart bypass.

Trevor Slinger the Survivor and Dave Pugh the Saviour

Mr Slinger, from Buckley, said: “If it hadn’t been for Dave and the club having a defibrillator, I wouldn’t be here today.

“It all happened so quickly – we were walking from the green where I had scored a three when I saw stars.

“The next thing I knew was when I woke up in hospital several days later.”

Mr Slinger was reunited with his life-savers at Mold Golf Club where they were officially thanked for their actions by president John Hughes.

Mr Hughes told Mr Pugh: “You acted with great presence of mind when you recognised that resuscitation would not be enough to revive your playing partner.

“You went on to use your first aid skills to operate our defibrillator machine and persisted with your efforts until you restarted his heart and saw signs of life.”

Letters of thanks were presented to Joannie Adams and Elaine Concannon and another sent to Trawsfynydd Golf Society in recognition of their members’ contribution to the life-saving efforts.

Mr Pugh, a production operator at Kellogg’s, Wrexham, is a trained first-aider and had taken a refresher course on resuscitation just one week before Mr Slinger’s collapse.

He said: “I never wanted recognition for what I did because it was touch and go for him for quite a while, but I must admit I did feel a sense of achievement when I later met him out and about with his wife.

“I think that every golf club and indeed every sporting facility should have a defibrillator machine with staff trained to use it.

“When I visit other golf courses I now ask as a matter of course if they have one.”

Mr Slinger is making a good recovery from his operation.

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Friends & Staff Save Golf Pro on Golf Course

Posted by cocreator on June 25, 2012
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Fred Elliott, one of the area’s most respected and well-liked golf pros, should have died on May 23. At least that’s what the numbers tell us.


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He was playing in the Sierra Nevada Chapter’s Match Play Championship at Hidden Valley and had just arrived at the 12th tee when he dropped.

“I heard a thump,” said fellow pro Chase Stigall, who was in the foursome along with Stuart Smith and Greg Wenzel. “It’s very weird talking about it. He was flat as a board. His eyes had rolled back into his head.”

Dr. Devang Desai, an interventional cardiologist who worked on Elliott after he was transported to Renown Medical Center, said the odds aren’t good for someone in Elliott’s shoes, a 66-year-old man whose family has a history of heart issues suffering cardiac arrest miles from the nearest hospital.

Desai said Seattle has one of the best success rates in reviving out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. Still, 83 percent die. And of the 17 percent who survive, many suffer varying degrees of brain damage because of oxygen deprivation.

“He had sudden cardiac death, basically cardiac arrest,” Desai said. “When the heart stops pumping blood, in layman’s terms, you’re dead.”

But Elliott, a teaching pro at Rosewood Lakes, is more than fine, he’s great. Two stents were placed in a blocked artery, and after nearly a week in the hospital, Elliott went home. He was 10 pounds lighter, but he went home.

“If it hadn’t been for Chase and Stuart and Franco, I’d be dead,” Elliott said.

And it’s all because of an uncanny series of events and other-worldly numerology, if you believe in those sorts of things.

“They kept telling us, if it wasn’t for these guys he never would have made it,” Fred’s wife, Lori Elliott, said.

Hidden Valley had had two defibrillators for some time, one kept in the clubhouse and one in a marshal’s cart. In April, the country club purchased two more automated external defibrillators (AEDs), and at the persistence of member Laurie Newmark, a cardiology nurse, had placed them out on the course. One was near the No. 5 green and No. 6 tee, and the other was between the No. 11 green and No. 12 tee.

Soon after Elliott dropped, Stigall and Smith began CPR. Franco Ruiz, an assistant superintendent, was working around the 11th green when he saw the commotion. He had recently been trained on the AED and quickly retrieved the unit.

“I hear all this yelling, ‘Wake up, Fred!,’ and I thought they were kidding,” Ruiz said. “I just told Chase, ‘Don’t stop.’ …

“When I got there it was really scary. He was purple.”

The AED is programmed to need nothing more than to have someone turn it on and attach the wires. In the next 10-12 minutes, it shocked Elliott three or four times. Meanwhile, another pro had called 911 and an operator was guiding them through life-saving measures.

Elliott began breathing and paramedics arrived. Soon after, an ambulance whisked him away.

“I was rattled the whole rest of the day,” said Stigall, whose PGA certification requires CPR training.

Elliott said he isn’t much of a religious man — “I believe in my fellow man,” he said — but the coincidences left him a bit stupefied.

• It happened just two weeks after Hidden Valley had placed the unit on the course and put its employees through training;

• It happened on the 12th tee box, right next to where the AED was placed on a post;

• Lori Elliott has three holes-in-one, all of them on a No. 12 hole;

• Fred’s stepson, Lori’s son John Turri, has a hole-in-one — at Hidden Valley’s 12th hole — and he wore No. 12 while playing baseball at Nevada.

AEDs can cost anywhere from about $1,000 to more than $4,000. Count Elliott among those who believe it’s a small investment. Since the incident, Sierra Sage in Stead has purchased an AED and keep it with the marshal’s cart. Several other courses in the area have at least one AED.

“The strongest message of all is that (a victim) can be saved,” Sierra Sage owner Mike Mazzaferri said. “It’s good to educate golfers to call the golf shop (in such an emergency) in case they have a defibrillator.”

This is a golf example, but it’s more than a golf story, Desai said.

“You look at any place where people congregate, clearly they need these things,” he said. “That’s the biggest thing — not only do you need the equipment, but you need people who are trained to use it. …

“Most people who suffer out-of-hospital arrest, they die. Those that do survive so often have significant brain damage. Not only did they save his life, but they saved his quality of life.”

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Store Staff Save Shopper

Posted by cocreator on June 20, 2012
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A FATHER who has completed a miraculous recovery after his life was saved by the use of a defibrillator has called for more of the machines to be stocked in public places.


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Les Gonzalez, from Warndon Villages, collapsed when he suffered a cardiac arrest in an IKEA store in Bristol’s Eastgate Centre while shopping with his wife Julia in December 2010.

As he lay unconscious quick-thinking staff treated him with a defibrillator, which the store had only just purchased.

They did enough to get the father-of-two’s heart started before Mr Gonzalez was rushed to Bristol Royal Infirmary where he spent the next few weeks fighting for his life, while his wife and two daughters Sarah and Joanna and son-in-law Josh kept a bedside vigil.

Despite suffering pneumonia and kidney failure the 59-year old underwent successful surgery to replace a faulty heart valve, before spending the next year battling his way back to health.

The chartered engineer, who had a small defibrillator implanted in his chest in January this year, remains overwhelmed at the support he has received from his family and friends at All Saints Church.

“I was so blessed to have the wonderful support of my family at by bedside in those early critical weeks,” he said.

“The church were wonderful too but there’s no question the staff at IKEA prevented me from dying. At the time I was travelling long distances for work and this could have happened on the motorway which would have been the end of it.”

He is now urging more organisations to invest in the £1,000 defibrillators.

“I would urge the councils, schools and large shops to consider investing in one – if they did I’m sure we could save more lives,” he said.

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Teammates Save Hockey Player on the Ice

Posted by cocreator on June 20, 2012
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Ron Amedeo, a 34-year-old father of twin 4-year-olds, skated backward toward his team’s goalie and fell to the ice. A few players from the previous game stood behind the glass, casually watching and shooting the breeze.


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Amedeo lay just to the right of goalie Shane Powers. The goalie waved and yelled to his brother, Council Bluffs chiropractor Cory Powers, who was one of those behind the glass. He hustled onto the ice through a nearby gate, followed by Tim Brady, a hockey player and nurse anesthetist at Creighton University Medical Center.

Tim Brady & Cory Powers the Saviours

Amedeo lay on his face and stomach.

Cory Powers and Brady first thought Amedeo had suffered a concussion or neck injury. Shane Powers, the goalie, knew better. He had seen how Amedeo had fallen, face first and limp, without having been hit or contacted in any way, before he slid across the ice and come to a stop near the goalie.

Shane Powers yelled for the defibrillator, which is usually called an AED. Someone called 911.

Dr. Jim Hammel, who played for the other team, skated over from the bench. He, like just about everyone else, thought Amedeo had been accidentally struck with a stick or knocked to the ice.

Hockey players and others gathered around Amedeo. They carefully rolled him onto his back. It grew quiet. Brady and Cory Powers still believed he had suffered a neck injury or concussion. They stabilized his neck.

Hammel got involved after a few seconds when Amedeo remained unconscious.

They put their fingers to his neck and pressed his wrist to check his pulse. Amedeo almost seemed to snore. Then his breath became shallow.

When his color began to turn bluish-purple, everyone knew Amedeo was in trouble.

Brady put his mouth to Amedeo’s and breathed a couple breaths. Shane Powers, who at one time was an emergency medical technician, began to attach the AED patches to Amedeo’s chest.

Hammel, a heart surgeon at Children’s Hospital & Medical Center and transplant surgeon at the Nebraska Medical Center, moved the left patch a bit higher on Amedeo’s chest.

The AED whined into shock mode and everyone moved back. The shock came, jolting Amedeo’s entire body.

Men placed hockey gloves under Amedeo’s head.

Hammel started chest compressions. Amedeo had a pulse and his normal skin color began to return. His eyes remained closed.

Everyone felt relieved when the Omaha Fire Department arrived with its EMTs, who put a neck brace on Amedeo, placed him on a backboard, got him on a stretcher and headed for the Nebraska Medical Center.

The players stood on the ice, dazed. Some hadn’t been that nervous while the incident unfolded, but then they were left to their thoughts. … They chose not to resume the game.

Amedeo’s kids were watching TV as their mom, Jeanie Amedeo, washed dishes. She received a text that her husband had suffered a medical crisis and been taken to the hospital.

She hurried to the emergency room and held his hand. She is sure he opened his eyes for a bit. In the intensive care unit that night, personnel asked her what to do if his condition declined.

Doctors thought her husband would be on a ventilator for a couple days, but that night they were able to take him off it. “Ron is very strong,” his wife said.

Hammel thought about whether Amedeo’s brain had been denied oxygen too long and whether he would be OK. Cory Powers woke up in the night, wondering if they could have done something better and if they had done enough.

Amedeo’s heart had an arrhythmia, evidently because of scar tissue that had built up for unknown reasons. Doctors implanted a device to automatically jolt his heart if it loses its rhythm. He spent a few nights in the hospital and soon resumed light-duty work at his job at a data center.

“I feel better,” he said recently. He remembered nothing of the episode.

The Amedeos figure that the AED and the fast, skilled work of the guys saved his life. “My family is grateful,” Amedeo said. “I am too. But my biggest worry would be not being around for my family.”

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Nurse Saves Grandfather at Stadium Parking Lot

Posted by cocreator on June 19, 2012
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About an hour before game time, Ryan Walker, 23, arrived at Kauffman Stadium with 15 others for a friend’s bachelor party. They planned to tailgate, watch the game and spend a night on the town.


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Thomas Hinds also was outside the stadium that night. He was in town from Virginia Beach, Va., for his grandson’s graduation from Park Hill South High School and was eager to attend a major-league game. But as he headed toward the ballpark, something wasn’t right.

“We started walking,” Hinds said, “got about halfway there, and then I knew I wasn’t going to make it — that I was going to pass out.”

Fortunately, Walker was nearby with his group when he noticed Hinds had collapsed.

“Immediately I started walking toward him,” Walker said, “and when I was about 20 or 30 feet away I started jogging and just thought, ‘Uh-oh.’ ”

At that point, Walker, a recent nursing graduate from Concorde College, let his instincts and training go to work.

While Royals security rushed to grab an automated external defibrillator, Walker gave Hinds mouth-to-mouth and chest compressions. Using the defibrillator, Walker shocked Hinds in an effort to start his heart. Walker continued CPR until paramedics arrived, and by that time Hinds had regained a pulse.

“He started to come to, opened his eyes a bit,” Walker said. “He knew his name, but they asked him his age and he said he was 35, so he was still pretty out of it.”

Hinds was taken to Centerpoint Medical Center in Independence, where Walker happens to work. As Hinds recovered, he learned that the man who had saved him worked just two floors above his hospital bed.

“He must have listened very well in those nursing classes,” Hinds said, “because he knew exactly what to do.”

The two met the next day.

“He came sauntering in like John Wayne,” Hinds said with a laugh. “I immediately knew who he was. …

“I said, ‘You’re the man who saved my life,’ and he didn’t say yes to that, he simply looked at me and said, ‘Well, that’s what I’m trained to do.’ ”

While Hinds got to thank the man who had revived him, Walker met the man whose life he had saved — the first life he’s saved in his short career.

“It was great. He was a super nice guy — real down to earth and has a great sense of humor,” Walker said. “He kept saying ‘thank you’ and was constantly boasting to the nurses that, ‘Oh, this is Ryan Walker. He saved my life.’ ”

For Walker, the experience reassured him that the medical field is the right fit for him.

“It helps build confidence,” he said. “Being less than a year out of nursing school, being in that situation, it feels good.”

The night of the incident, after Hinds’ wife and grandson thanked Walker, the team gave him a reward as well.

“We got our seats upgraded (by stadium staff) to the second row, and the Royals won,” Walker said. “It ended up being a pretty darn good bachelor party.”

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