Equipment, Training, and Rapid Response Combine To Save Life At Heritage Baseball Game

Equipment, Training, and Rapid Response Combine To Save Life At Heritage Baseball Game
Posted on 05/18/2017
Nashville resident Thomas Hobson says he owes his life to the presence of an Automatic External Defibrillator, or AED, at the White House Heritage sports complex, and its quick application when he needed it.

Hobson was watching his grandson’s team as they played against White House Heritage in April, when he experienced a coronary arrest that rendered him unresponsive on the sidewalk in front of the ballfield concession stand.

“I remember it looked like the sidewalk was coming up to me,” he said, “and then I don’t remember anything else.  I don’t even remember hitting the ground.”

That’s when preparation and training took over, ultimately resulting in Hobson’s resuscitation and transport to Vanderbilt Medical Center.

Athletic Trainer Andrea Gowan was present, though not in the immediate vicinity when the incident occurred.

“I was at the soccer game, being a higher risk sport,” she said, “when I got a call from one of my parents saying it appeared someone had fallen from the bleachers.”  Gowan said she was also being paged over the PA system, and then got a second call, this time from high school baseball coach Chris Logsdon.

“I asked if the patient was responsive and he said, ‘No, you need to get here quick.’  When I got there, they had already retrieved the AED and one of the mothers, Michelle Gunter, had already done four sets of chest compressions on him.

Gowan said at that point, she connected the AED, which checked heart rhythm and audibly advised that shock was needed.  After administering the shock, she and Gunter continued with Gowan doing chest compressions and Gunter providing rescue breathing.  Gowan said that Hobson responded during the second set of compressions by breathing deeply and then opening his eyes.

Paramedics arrived a bit later, at which time Gowan said she disconnected the AED and let them go to work. Once they stabilized Hobson, they immediately transported him to Vanderbilt.



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Hobson is now convalescing at home after receiving a pacemaker during his stay at Vanderbilt.  He credits Gowan’s immediate use of the AED with his survival from the ordeal.

“I don’t know that girl, but I’m here because of her,” he said.  “The Lord sent her, and I’m alive because she had that machine and knew what to do with it.”

Each district facility has at least one unit, with some utilizing as many as three. Director Mike Davis counts that as a benefit to the entire community.

“We’re fortunate to have these devices available in case they’re needed to assist an individual that experiences a sudden cardiac event like this one,” he said.

All parties involved agreed that the existence and timely use of the AED in this instance was the major contributor to Mr. Hobson’s survival.  The continuing knowledge that RCS schools are specifically equipped for this type of an emergency is a major reassurance to all of the district’s personnel, students and visitors.  

 
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Robertson County Schools