Husband Saves Wife at Home

Posted by cocreator on September 26, 2011
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Mary Robinson has little memory of the day last spring when her heart simply stopped for more than 46 minutes.

Mary Robinson ( seated ) the Survivor

But the 64-year-old Old Fort woman had a heart full of gratitude Monday, thankful for her husband, firefighters, paramedics, nurses and doctors who saved her life.

Robinson was the guest of honor at the first cardiac arrest survivor’s luncheon at Mission Hospital. The odds of surviving a cardiac arrest is only about 5 percent, so not many emergency or medical workers get the chance to celebrate with a survivor, said Frank Castelblanco, Mission’s director of cardiac emergencies.

“According to the odds, Mary really shouldn’t be here,” Castelblanco said.

Her husband, Lloyd, recalls Mary was in the kitchen, cooking their supper, while he was watching TV. She staggered into the room, sat down then “just went back,” Lloyd Robinson recalled. “I knew something was wrong.”

He then did something that saved his wife’s life, Castelblanco said. He dialed 911.

“That’s the most important thing, the first thing I would urge people to do if they see someone collapse,” Castelblanco said.

The dispatcher gave him instructions on how to perform CPR, and he started compressing his wife’s chest. Their dog, Abigail, was biting at his hand, but Lloyd Robinson kept up the rhythm until the first responders arrived within about five minutes.

Trading off, firefighters and then paramedics continued to perform CPR for 46 minutes, then applied a defibrillator until they had Mary’s heart beating again.

Gary Robinson, the couple’s son, was so impressed by his father’s action that he took classes and became certified in CPR. “I didn’t want to have to learn it on the fly like he did.”

The paramedics also started cooling her body to protect her brain from damage, inducing therapeutic hypothermia, according to William Kehler, director of McDowell County Emergency Medical Services.

After almost three weeks in Intensive Care and surgery for a defibrillator to keep her heart in rhythm, Mary Robinson was glad to be sharing sandwiches with her family and the people who saved her life. “I am so thankful to all the paramedics and the people at the hospital who didn’t give up on me,” she said.

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Security Guards, Doctor & Wife Save Elderly Man in Mall

Posted by cocreator on April 27, 2009
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We will be reporting on lives saved around the world since our first documented life saved here in Singapore.

83 year old Jack Folkins of Annapolis was with his wife, Margaret, in front of the Starbucks near the JCPenney store just before 4:30 p.m. when he had the attack and collapsed on a sofa, according to mall security and county Fire Department officials.

The mall’s security team, of Professional Security Consultants, was alerted to the medical emergency and officers stationed throughout the mall quickly sprang into action, said Sgt. David McMullen, a supervisor of the mall security crew.

Officers Hasan Nazzel and Ian Preuss ran to the customer-service counter in front of Lord & Taylor and grabbed a first-aid kit and one of three defibrillators at the mall, McMullen said.

They ran to Starbucks, where they joined McMullen and Officers Jamie Schmidt and James Millsap as they assisted Folkins, who was not breathing and did not have a pulse.

Courtney McCluskey, a physician who works for Franklin Square Hospital, was walking through the mall when she heard screams for help and ran to help. She and Folkins’ wife were already doing CPR when the security officers arrived, McMullen said. McCluskey was performing chest compressions on Folkins and his wife was breathing into his mouth.

Meanwhile, a large crowd was forming around Folkins.

As the officers cleared onlookers, McMullen placed the defibrillator on Folkins’ chest.

“I analyzed his body – then the (defibrillator) advised me to give him a shock,” he said. “At that point he wasn’t breathing and he didn’t have a pulse, either. I reanalyzed him, and another shock was not advised. I told the doctor to continue compressions and I gave him two full breaths.”

Soon after, Folkins regained consciousness and began breathing normally, McMullen said.

Paramedics arrived about a minute later to take over Folkins’ treatment.

“It was quite a miracle that he survived,” Folkins said, adding that her husband is at Washington Hospital Center in Washington, D.C., awaiting heart surgery. “Everything was just beautifully done, and I feel like I have two angels on my shoulders.”

McMullen said the rescue was “an amazing experience.”

“This is my first life-saving experience since I’ve been here for four years,” he said.

“I’m very grateful for all of the people who helped us,” Margaret Folkins said Saturday. “I did the best I could under the circumstances, but they were absolutely wonderful – both the two ladies who came in as strangers and attended to us, and then also the security force at the mall.”

“They all used the training that they’ve received and acted in a very quick and smart manner,” he said. “I couldn’t be any more proud of them if they were my own sons.”

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Wife, Firefighters & Paramedics Save Sleeping Husband

Posted by cocreator on December 16, 2008
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We will be reporting on lives saved around the world since our first documented life saved here in Singapore.

Michelle MacIntosh, left, and John Dunn meet with emergency medical dispatcher April Campbell.

Michelle MacIntosh, left, and John Dunn meet with emergency medical dispatcher April Campbell

For all intents and purposes, he died that night. Right there in his bed, sleeping. He is 45 and a father. Healthy. Fit. A runner, volunteer firefighter, hockey player and a guy whose greatest decadence is cream with his coffee.

Dave’s story Around 3:15 a. m., the peace of the night is shattered by a noise so loud, so strange it wakes up Michelle.

It’s John. Is he snoring? No. He’s on his back, rocking. His arms and legs pull in and out in a fetal position. Is he having a nightmare?

She pushes herself up to her knees and shakes his shoulders. “John,” she shouts. Before she can shake him again, his body goes limp and he collapses into the bed.

“I could feel him leaving,” she says. “I could feel him die.”

She grabs him again and shakes his shoulders. Harder. She prays that he wakes up, but there is no response. Then, with all the strength she can muster, she hits him square in the chest with the base of her hand. He takes in a long, funny breath.

He had no pulse. He was not breathing.

Thing is, his partner in life couldn’t just let him go without a fight. They’ve been together for just three years, yet feel like high school sweethearts. Between them, they have three children. Three very important reasons for living.

So, 39-year-old Michelle MacIntosh fought back.

Michelle MacIntosh, 39, is a counsellor and life coach who in the early morning hours of Nov. 1 became the lifeline for her partner, 45- year-old John Dunn.

She called 911. On the other end of the line was a woman whose voice she will never forget.

“What’s your name,” asks the woman.

“April,” answers the voice on the other end of the phone.

“I’m Michelle,” the woman says. “You need to help me save his life.”

April Campbell is an emergency medical dispatcher with Niagara EMS. April taught Michelle how to do CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation). She was the calm in a chaotic night.

The cordless phone is wedged between Michelle’s ear and shoulder. She is kneeling on the bed beside John. Pushing on his chest. Counting each compression out loud.

Michelle is a manual life support machine. John’s first life support.

Michelle can hear the rumble of the fire truck outside her home. She runs to unlock her door. At her doorstep are four firefighters from Station 3, Captain Ron Baerg and firefighters Dave Merry, Eric Farlow and Kevin Beamer.

Eric begins CPR. Compressions. Dave gets the defibrillator ready. Puts the pads on John’s chest. Kevin gets the BVM, a bag valve mask, in place.

Paramedics Trevor, Adam and Evan arrive. John’s heart is in ventricular fibrillation, shaking like a bowl of Jello.

John is defibrillated once. One shock. His quivering, chaotic heart returns to a normal rhythm.

He starts to chew and spit up the airway firefighters had put in. He breathes on his own. He has a pulse.

Sunday morning. John is conscious. Doctors pull the breathing tube out of his mouth. Michelle watches with John’s 14-year-old son, Kurt.

It has made them stronger. Closer. “I look at Michelle and I feel like I’ve known her forever,” says John.

“I feel like she was my high school sweetheart.”

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