Two youths who brought a complete stranger back to life at Perth Airport nine days ago have been hailed “marvellous young people” by the man whose life they helped save.
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Jack Murray, 17, and Cassandra Mulliner, 23, were brought together today to meet Andrew Makowiecki, the man whose life they helped save on June 23 after the 57-year-old had suffered a heart attack.
Mr Makowiecki had just disembarked from a late night flight from Melbourne to Perth when he collapsed on the tarmac from a cardiac arrest.
He soon stopped breathing and did not have a pulse.
It was only four weeks ago he was climbing mountains on Flinders Island, near Tasmania.
Jack, who was sitting just meters from Mr Makowiecki on the plane, immediately began CPR as Cassandra, an airport ground staff employee, rushed to get a life saving defibrillator machine.
“I saw Andrew on the ground and Jack began CPR, he quickly told me he was not breathing and that his heart had stopped so I ran to get the defibrillator,” Cassandra said.
“We cut his shirt off and I was praying it would work, he started to go grey but then after the first shock (of the machine) he came to.”
Cassandra said the whole experience had inspired her to become a paramedic.
“If I can help save people’s lives and make a difference, why wouldn’t I do it,” she said.
In an emotional meeting today at Royal Perth Hospital Jack, Cassandra and Mr Makowiecki reminisced over the evening which almost claimed the 57-year-old’s life.
“They are marvellous young people because they basically saved my life,” Mr Makowiecki said.
“This just proves just how great young people are.”
While Mr Makowiecki’s life was undoubtedly saved by the young pair’s quick actions and the defibrillator machine, he is to undergo triple bypass heart surgery tomorrow.
Jack, who is studying in Melbourne and was flying back to Perth to visit his family, said he felt it was “instinctive” of him to help Mr Makowiecki as he lay dying on the ground.
He said the whole experience had been emotional but very nice to be a part of at the same time.
“It was a once in a lifetime experience and it will stick with me for the rest of my life,” he said.
“It was so inspiring and a very heartfelt moment to be a part of, it’s so nice to see him (Mr Makowiecki) up and moving.”