Local first responders thanked for life saving work



The superb life saving work of the Birr & Banagher First Responders was officially recognised by a 53 year old local man recently after they were called to save his life after a near fatal heart attack earlier this year.

Last February, Birr & Banagher CFR groups received a cardiac arrest call out from the National Ambulance Service (NAS). Both groups arrived on scene where they attended to John Hillard and helped to save his life.

Having recovered from a near fatal heart attack, John popped into a responder training meeting in Dooly's Hotel, Birr last week, to say thank you to the men and women who attended to him. John was extremely grateful for the great patient care he received from the groups and since has had three stents fitted to his heart.

John doesn't remember anything about his near fatal cardiac incident or even the Banagher and Birr responder members attending to him at the time but he praised the superb service they provided to him.

Outlining details of the incident, Birr CRF group said this man's son had started chest compressions on his own dad when the two groups arrived at the scene. Straight away, both groups took over, placing defibrillator pads on John's chest and taking cover compressions. “They then worked extremely hard to safe this man's life,” they said.

“This man received great patient care and after four shocks in, the man's heart restarted and a pulse was found. Thankfully, two ambulances and four fantastic paramedics from the NAS arrived with an advance paramedic and all worked as a team.

“Paramedics did all their checks and kept the man comfortable. The Air Medical 112 arrived on scene next and stablised the man before he was airlifted to the Cardiac lab in Galway by these brilliant people.”

Last week at a training meeting, the members were delighted to welcome John back to say “thank you” to all for what they had done for him. He thanked the Birr First Responders especially David McEvoy, Rebecca Nevin McEvoy, Fergal Clarke, Christine Guilfoyle and Eamon Smyth.

He also thanked the Banagher First Responders especially Damien Keenaghan, Ger Kelly and Sean Birmingham. He extended his thanks to the paramedics, Seamus Pyke, Keith Cunningham, Mark Sweeney and Paramedic Fergal on duty that day too. Advanced paramedic Jim and the crew from the Air Medical 112 were also thanked for their assistance.

John simply thanked everyone one. “My life was saved by people (First Responders) I never knew existed. I am eternally grateful to all these life saving people that were with me that day and can't thank you all enough,” he said.

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