You are driving a block away from your home and you see a person running up the sidewalk waving their arms and they yell “STOP!”
You put down your window and the person says; “My neighbor behind me is down!”
The person talking is almost in a panic state of mind. What would you do?
My wife and I had just left our home on Memorial Day and were headed for our local diner, to grab a salad for dinner, when we saw a woman doing exactly this.
I stopped my car, then turned the car around and the woman got in my car, the car of a total stranger.
We drove back around the block towards our home and there in the back yard – just seven houses from ours, was the neighbor, Peggy, lying on the ground.
We quickly called 911 and I rolled our neighbor onto her back, and did not get any pulse and could not see any breathing.
My wife gave the 911 operator the address and then held the cell phone to my ear.
Keep in mind I have not had CPR training in almost 30 years and even when I had the training I had never performed CPR for real.
The 911 operator gave me specific instructions which I followed intently.
Several minutes passed and the rescue squad arrived and took over.
By this time, several other neighbors had come to see what had happened.
The paramedics were able to get a “rhythmic pulse” and transported Peggy to the hospital.
Another neighbor located Peggy’s husband, and drove him to the hospital, and stayed with him for almost 5 hours.
Once again the community spirit arises.
I am not sharing this with you to boast in any way.
I just was glad I could help.
Since that evening I have begun to think about things and wondered how many people could give CPR if necessary?
My Dad turned 90 on May 29th and if he and I were out to dinner could I do this again?
If he were at his senior center could someone there perform CPR to save him?
Even if someone has the training could they in fact perform in a time of need?
Sometimes we rely on perfect strangers to be a part of our teams.
Just like the woman who saw Peggy lying on the ground from her deck, and flagged us down and got into the car with strangers.
The 911 operator joined the team when he worked with me and walked me through the process and kept me steady until the paramedics arrived.
Our faith is still there for most of us and I hope you take the time out over the next several weeks to locate and take a CPR course.
The life you save could be the parent or child of someone you know.
Image courtesy of US Army Africa