SCA Survivors Attend 50th Anniversary of CPR Gala

50 SCA Survivors at CPR Gala

Sudden cardiac arrest survivors Olivia Quigley and Kinlee Keltner present roses to the inventors of CPR, Dr. James Jude, left, and Dr. Guy Knickerbocker, center, as Nicholas Kouwenhoven, representing his grandfather, right, looks on, December 9, 2010 during the Citizen CPR Foundation’s 50th Anniversary of CPR Gala held at SeaWorld in San Diego. (Denis Poroy/AP Images for Citizen CPR Foundation)

December 20, 2010 - Nine sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) survivors, who were saved with the help of CPR and ZOLL resuscitation devices, were among the 50 SCA survivors selected to attend the 50th Anniversary of CPR Gala Celebration at Sea World in San Diego December  9, 2010.  The celebration honored the three doctors who pioneered the life-saving technique in 1960—Dr. James Jude, Dr. Guy Knickerbocker and the late Dr. William Kouwenhoven, who was represented by his grandson, Nicholas.  To date, CPR is estimated to have saved more than two million lives.

The celebration, sponsored by the Citizens for Citizen CPR Foundation, commemorated the power of citizen action, honored the rescuers who saved these survivors, and launched a national call to action to engage more citizens to save lives. 

The nine SCA survivors pictured among the group include:

Carlton Smith of Metairie, La., who collapsed a mile from the finish line while running alongside his son in this year’s Boston Marathon.  He was saved with the help of bystander CPR and a ZOLL AED Pro® used by the Boston EMS Bike Squad.

Teddy Okerstrom, now 17, Plymouth, Minn., who collapsed during spring conditioning for football at Wayzata High School.  With the help of his coaches,  school nurse and the fastest boy in the school who ran onto the field with the ZOLL AED Plus®, Teddy survived and is set to attend college this fall.  

Olivia Quigley, now 8, Winthrop, Mass., was having fun in her second grade gym class at East Boston Catholic School two years ago when she collapsed.  Her teachers applied CPR until Boston EMS arrived with an AED Pro that restarted her heart before she was transported to the hospital.

Francisco Tuttle, 47, Beaufort, S.C., married for 20 years and the father of three, was at work as an MRI technician treating a patient when he collapsed.  The facility’s medical director mobilized the staff and began CPR until Charleston County EMS arrived with the ZOLL AutoPulse®.  The AutoPulse continued uninterrupted, high-quality chest compressions until Francisco arrived at the hospital.

Caralee Weich, then 57, Morgan Hill, Calif., was leaving a San Francisco theatre after seeing a performance of Momma Mia, to celebrate her daughter’s pending nuptials when she collapsed.  Bystander CPR and the AutoPulse provided by San Francisco Fire Department help save her life.

Matt Keene, then 17, Belkin, N.H. , was fortunate his high school,  Kimball Union Academy, had an AED available and procedures in place when he collapsed on their football team.  Now a business major at University of New Hampshire, he has testified before Congress advocating for AEDs in schools.  

Lee Younts, 34, Richmond, Va., was demonstrating some new electrical equipment at a NOVEC plant in Gainesville, Virginia, when 7,200 volts of electricity surged through his body, knocking him cold.  Fortunately, the utility workers were trained in CPR and they had an AED Plus on hand, which they used to shock Lee’s heart before he was medivaced to a hospital in Washington, D.C.     

David Krogh of Chula Vista, Calif. is civic minded and active in his community.  Last year, he was mowing the lawn in a municipal area he found overgrown due to budget cutbacks when he collapsed of SCA.  A Good Samaritan driving by stopped to administer CPR until Chula Vista EMS arrived with the AutoPulse a few minutes later.     The quick action of his rescuers enabled David to be able to see his daughter graduate from Carnegie Mellon and go on to graduate school.

Laura Geraghty of North Attleboro, Mass. was fortunate to survive the SCA she suffered when she worked as a school bus driver.  Now, always equipped with the ZOLL PocketCPR®  she carries with her, she went on to help save the life of a man who collapsed in her local WalMart.

 Related stories: 

2010 AHA Guidelines for CPR and ECC Released
Sudden Cardiac Arrest Victim Saved at Twins Baseball Game
CPR and AED Awareness Week June 1-7