During a special luncheon in Del Mar on June 7th, American Medical Response, CSA-17 fire agencies and the County of San Diego’s Health and Human Services Agency teamed up to recognize more than a dozen North County paramedics, EMTs, firefighters and every day citizens who jumped into action and used their CPR skills to save the life of a cardiac arrest victim.
Encinitas Fire Chief Mike Stein was the MC and Nick Macchione, Director of the county’s Health and Human Services Agency, gave the keynote speech, praising those who not only took the initiative to learn CPR, but for putting the life-saving technique to use when they were called upon.
In 2017, Del Mar resident Vincent Tropiano was jogging with his fiancé Shayla near Dog Beach in Del Mar when he suddenly went into cardiac arrest. Shayla is a teacher, and was trained in CPR, which she administered while calling for help. Two tourists, both nurses, who happened to be driving nearby, immediately stopped to help. They were quickly joined by a local off-duty emergency room physician who happened to be jogging there as well. They continued until emergency crews arrived and took over. Honored were Solana Beach Fire Captain Randy Loftis, Engineer Paramedic Carson Hogan, Firefighter Paramedic James Hancock, as well as AMR Paramedic Ennis Jackson, and EMT Jeff Holz. Vincent is living proof of how important CPR and AEDs are and how crucial those first few precious minutes are.
When Ian Noble’s heart suddenly stopped beating in 2017 while at home in Encinitas, his father-in-law, Ted Matsumoto, knew exactly what to do – he called 9-1-1, got down on his knees and began CPR, and kept pumping Ian’s heart until emergency crews arrived. Mr. Matsumoto was honored for his quick actions, as were several firefighters from Engine and Medic 232 of Encinitas, including Captain Paramedic Adam Heer, Captain Paramedic Chad Delude and Firefighter Paramedic Josef Prola, as well as AMR Paramedic Valery Graham and EMT Brandon Gubach.
In 2016, Rancho Santa Fe resident Carol Tellez went into cardiac arrest while at home with her husband, Dr. Patrick Tellez. Dr. Tellez, who had just renewed his CPR certification, immediately went to work and started applying the life-saving technique. He continued until crews from the Rancho Santa Fe Protection District and American Medical Response arrived. In addition to Dr. Tellez, honored at the luncheon were Captain Paramedic Trever Krueger, Engineer Paramedic Brian Schmidt, Firefighter Paramedic Scott Young, Paramedic Todd Klingensmith, and EMT Kenneth Taylor.
“First Responders cannot do it alone. We need the community’s help during a cardiac arrest event. A bystander that is willing and able to administer CPR doubles or even triples the chances of that patient surviving,” said Fire Chief Mike Stein.
According to the American Heart Association, more than 350,000 cardiac arrests occur every year in the U.S., 90% of which are fatal. However, nearly 45% of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests victims survived when bystander CPR was administered immediately.
To learn CPR in San Diego, go to amr.net.
Top: From left, AMR Director of Administration Dave Austin; County Health and Human Services Agency Director Nick Macchione; Christie Knight from the Office of County Supervisor Kristin Gaspar; County EMS Medical Director Kristi Koenig, County EMS QA Specialist Dianne Amang; Donna Cleary from the office of County Supervisor Jim Desmond; AMR Government and Public Affairs Manager Madeleine D. Baudoin; and County EMS Administrator Andy Parr. Courtesy photo