Teen Saves Teammate during Softball Practice

Posted by cocreator on April 21, 2013
Events / No Comments

A high-school softball player found the mandatory CPR class she took the day came in handy — she used her new skills to save a teammate’s life.

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Taylor Bisbee and her friends on the High Point, N.C.,Wesleyan Academy softball team were doing some base running. Suddenly eighth-grader Paris White collapsed.

Taylor Bisbee the Saviour

“It was scary to see her fall like that. Cause I wasn’t expecting it,” Bisbee told MyFox8.

One of White’s teammates dialed 911. But Bisbee was the one who immediately jumped into action and started performing CPR.

“I just knelt down next to her and I just started,” Bisbee said.

“It was really scary for me because it was the difference between life and death.”

Minutes later, staff arrived on the scene with a defibrillator to get White’s heart beating again, according to Coach Donald Brewer.

An ambulance took White to Duke University Hospital. It is unclear what caused the young girl’s collapse, but she is expected to make a full recovery.

The experience has encouraged the fast-thinking Bisbee to pursue a career in medicine.

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Teammates Save Elderly Player at Softball Game

Posted by cocreator on November 23, 2011
Events / No Comments

On Nov. 1, 66-year-old Henderson County Senior League Softball player Bill Curtis suffered a sudden cardiac arrest and died … four times.

Bill Curtis the Survivor with Tom Hendley and Ed Neace the Saviours

Thanks to the quick response of his fellow players, Tom Hendley and Ed Neace, and the fact that the league recently purchased a defibrillator to take to its games, Curtis is alive and well and able to tell his story.

“I remember reaching second base. After that, the next thing I remember was waking up in the hospital four days later,” said Curtis, who prior to the event had never had any health problems and had never been hospitalized.

Bill’s wife, Nancy, was at his bedside when he awoke.

“The first thing he said when he woke up was that he remembered hitting the ball hard over Ed’s head in the outfield and how mad Ed was,” Nancy Curtis said.

After Bill Curtis hit his double, the next batter hit a ball to the outfield to Neace.

“There were two outs, so Bill was running from second to third. Then he took off for home, hoping I’d miss the ball,” Neace, 63, said. “I caught it. I was coming in from the outfield when I saw it happen.”

Neace said Bill Curtis stumbled a little and then went head first into the fence.

“I didn’t realize it at the time. I was running back to the dugout from the field, then I saw someone lying down on the ground. I said, ‘Who’s down? Who’s down?’ Then I saw it was Bill. I rushed over to him and Tom was already there,” Neace said. “He said, ‘Call 911. He’s not responding.”

Just a few weeks before Bill Curtis’ cardiac arrest, several of the Henderson County Senior League softballers had participated in a CPR training class conducted by Dan Hayes of the EMS. Hendley, the Senior League’s president, had suggested the class for his fellow players and also suggested that they purchase a defibrillator to have at all their games.

“We had the training about 4-5 weeks earlier, and praise the Lord we had that training,” Neace said.

Hendley, 66, a retired police officer from New Jersey, was the first to see Bill Curtis go down.

“I went to him and turned him over, and he had a gash on his head where he had hit the fence,” Hendley said. “So I didn’t know if he had just tripped and hit the fence and that was his problem or if the problem had happened before that. When I saw that he was unresponsive, I knew the problem happened before he hit the fence.”

Without hesitation, Hendley and Neace put their training into action.

“So then I opened up his airway and tried to help him to breathe, and then I saw his eyes roll back, I knew we had lost him,” Hendley said.

Hendley immediately got the defibrillator and hooked Bill Curtis to it.

“The machine takes a few seconds to analyze, and it will tell you whether or not a shock is needed. When I hooked Bill up to it, it said ‘shock advised,’ so we shocked him. His body went clean off the ground, and we all stood back,” Hendley said. “It’s quite a jolt.”

“It’s a good thing I didn’t remember that,” Bill Curtis laughed.

After Hendley felt a faint pulse from the shock of the defribillator, he was trying to get Bill Curtis to breathe while Neace did chest compressions.

“We were both focused and working so feverishly to help Bill that we didn’t even notice the EMS guys arrive,” Hendley said.

“I was doing the chest compressions when I got tapped on the shoulder. It was the EMS guy, and I kept working and said, ‘Hang on, I’m still working on him.’ After the EMS guy took over, I had a sigh of relief,” Neace said.

“We were so into what we were doing, we didn’t know how much time had passed,” Hendley said.

“I know it wasn’t long before the EMS guys were there, but from the time he went down to the time they arrived, it seemed like an eternity. Everything was like in slow motion,” Neace said.

When EMS did take over CPR, Bill Curtis went into cardiac arrest again.

“The EMS guys got there and worked on him and then had to shock him again,” Hendley said. “Then they got him on the ambulance and took him to Pardee (Hospital).”

Bill Curtis’ nightmare wasn’t over yet. His heart stopped twice more in the ambulance on the way to the hospital.

“They said he died four times … twice on the field and twice in the ambulance,” Neace said.

“That means he has five lives left,” Nancy Curtis said.

Once he was revived and doctors performed tests on him in the ICU, there was great news.

“The doctors said there was no heart or brain damage,” Neace said.

“The doctors said they were expecting to find some kind of blockage in the arteries and they were fully expecting to have to do heart surgery. They found nothing. They said I had a healthy heart, and they still have no clue why it stopped that day,” Bill Curtis said.

There were no warning signs for Bill Curtis, and on his official discharge papers from the hospital, the diagnosis was “sudden cardiac death.”

“They say there’s only like a 6 percent chance of surviving that,” Bill Curtis said.

Nancy Curtis remembers the call and was preparing for the worst when she made her way to Jackson Park that day.

“What’s strange is that Bill and I had talked just the night before about what would we do if something happened to one of us. We’ve been together 45 years, and being together with someone that long, I truly believe you get a sixth sense about someone. It was like we knew something was about to happen,” she said.

Bill Curtis is getting used to his new lifestyle after the event. Now, he has a device that will shock his heart, along with a pacemaker to regulate it, if cardiac arrest happens again.

One thing he’s having a hard time adjusting to is the fact that he can’t drive.

“I guess the law is that if you die, you aren’t allowed to drive for six months,” Nancy Curtis said.

But he will be allowed to get back on the field in just six weeks.

“That’s incredible when you think about it and when you witnessed what we did that day,” Neace said. “But if you knew what kind of a person Bill is, it wouldn’t really surprise you. He runs three miles a day, and he’s in better shape than most anyone on that field. He was the last person in the world I thought that would happen to.”

Bill Curtis has already been back to the field, cheering on his fellow players, but he’s itching to get the bat in his hands once again.

“He’s a great player, and we can’t wait to get him back,” Hendley said.

And Bill’s wife isn’t about to hold him back from the sport he loves.

“I truly believe that if Bill would’ve been home with me that day, and I live just a quarter-mile from Mission Hospital, he would be dead or brain damaged. It would’ve taken too long for trained help to arrive,” she said.

“For women worried about their men playing softball, let me say this: There is no safer place for your man to be than at Jackson Park on any Tuesday or Friday if it doesn’t rain or snow.”

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School & Firefighter Save Student during Softball Game

Posted by cocreator on April 17, 2009
Events / No Comments

We will be reporting on lives saved around the world since our first documented life saved here in Singapore.

Shocked teammates of the Delray Beach school, huddled in right field in a post-game meeting, had no idea what was happening Wednesday night after the team’s 5-4 win at West Boca High. Some screamed she was having a seizure. Claire Dunlap was not breathing.

“We were all laughing and were having a fun time before she fell down,” Heritage-Delray senior catcher Lauryn Wright told the Sun Sentinel.

“At first we didn’t think anything was wrong until she began convulsing like she couldn’t catch her breath.”

Palm Beach County Fire Rescue Capt. Roberto Grau who was watching his son finish a baseball game at a nearby field, came running over.

“I took a peek over there and saw a bunch of people gathered around somebody laying in the outfield,” said Grau, who has worked for Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue for 18 years, plus an additional three years in fire service.

As soon as I looked at her I knew she was in cardiac arrest. I thought if she’s not coded, she’s about there.”

“People were in the panic mode,” said Grau, a 22-year veteran. “They were hysterical. I don’t think anybody really knew what was going on.”

With the school’s trainer, Grau placed an oxygen mask on Dunlap and then checked her pulse. There was none. They reached for an automatic external defibrillator, which the trainer carried in her golf cart, in an effort to revive her heart.

“We turned it on and it did its thing,” said Grau who helped the school’s trainer administer the shocks.

After three jolts, Grau saw her chest begin to rise, but she remained unconscious. Three minutes after she passed out, paramedics arrived.

Robert Stone is the Headmaster of the American Heritage School. He says, “I think they were trying regular CPR and she was not responding. She was at great risk and if they had not had that (defibrillator) she might not have made it.”

“No prior warning at all in fact she had a perfect day at school. I was with her for part of the time working on a project.”

Dunlap, 15, remains in intensive care at West Boca Medical Center, where the sophomore will undergo tests to determine what caused an apparent seizure that stopped her breathing and then her heart, Headmaster Robert Stone said.


Sarah Donner hugs Claire Dunlap

Sarah Donner hugs Claire Dunlap

In the American Heritage Delray 2A regional game Tuesday night, the team takes the field except for center fielder Claire Dunlap.

Dunlap stands in the dugout not because she’s benched and not because of grades, but because two weeks ago, she died.

“People were screaming ‘She’s having a seizure’ so immediately I said to one of the kids in class ‘Please go get the AED’ as I was running over there and when I got there I could tell it wasn’t a normal seizure. Something was wrong with her. I checked for breathing. I checked her pulse and she was unresponsive,” says Donner.

“I remember her mom holding her hand screaming ‘You have to save Claire, you have to save her’ and I remember thinking to myself… You have to do something to help this girl,” says Donner.

“Most of the time we take them to the hospital. We really don’t hear the end result so for this, kinda hit home, because I’m a baseball coach and we get to see the girls come in and out from the softball field so we have a little bit more tie to this and seeing the end result with Claire just making it better for us to see that she’s doing ok now,” says Manriquez.

“I’m just glad that we were able to make such a difference in a young person’s life,” says Grau.

Dunlap will have a better idea of when she can return to sports in about six weeks.

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Teammates & Cops Save Young Father at Softball Game

Posted by cocreator on March 17, 2009
Events / No Comments

We will be reporting on lives saved around the world since our first documented life saved here in Singapore.

Christian Barton, 30, who was fielding a ground ball at second base at a Patchogue softball field , collapsed as he was about to throw the ball.

The officers, Paul Schreiber and Edward Ryby, and a Patchogue Village public safety officer Jim Mylett responded Saturday night to the 911 call from Shore Front Park in Patchogue.

Schreiber, who was only three blocks away when he received the call, arrived first. Barton’s teammates were already performing CPR.

“As soon as I got there, his teammates were waiting for me,” Schreiber said. “Nobody was panicking, which helped the situation tremendously.”

They rolled Barton on his back and used a defibrillator to monitor his condition. Mylett and Ryby arrived shortly after and took over the CPR.

When Barton stopped breathing, the defibrillator signaled that shock was needed. It wasn’t till after the second shock that Ryby noticed a pulse on Barton’s neck.

The Patchogue ambulance arrived and transported Barton to Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center, where he was held in the emergency room for two hours. He was then transferred to Stony Brook University Medical Center and was sedated overnight, according to Barton’s cousin Brian Jenkins, 26, of Amityville.

As soon as yesterday evening, Barton, of Spar Drive was breathing on his own and laughing with his two young sons, according to Jenkins.

“I’m just so happy we were all able to help,” Schreiber said. “That’s why they call them teammates. It was a complete group effort.”

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