MEDFORD, Ore. — By chance, the two instances of cardiac arrest both took place at Food 4 Less — and both saw ordinary people stepping up to help save a life. Now Medford Fire-Rescue wants to recognize those citizens for their heroism.
"Over the Christmas holiday, two separate incidents occurred roughly a week apart at the same location, Food 4 Less, in Medford," said Melissa Cano, Emergency Manager for the City of Medford. "Both incidents involved two different Cardiac Arrest patients requiring the performance of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), and Automated External Defibrillation (AED)."
The first event, according to Cano, happened on December 22 when a car crashed into the Food 4 Less building around noon. Several employees and one customer ran to the driver's aid — finding that she was unresponsive and not breathing.
Calling for help, the group turned off the vehicle, pulled the driver out, and began performing CPR. One employee ran to grab an AED unit. An officer with Medford Police soon arrived to assist, followed by firefighters with Medford Fire-Rescue who relieved the others.
"Due to the rapid and effective CPR performance, the patient arrived to the hospital with a pulse, and a chance," Cano said.
Then on December 28, someone notified a Food 4 Less employee of an "unresponsive person on the property" — reportedly hunched over a bench. Cano said that this employee was among those who had helped the driver just days before.
Acting quickly, that employee called for help, began CPR, and delivered a shock from the store's AED before first responders got to the scene and took over.
"Both incidents are a true testament to the willingness of those in our community to help a person in need. Medford Fire-Rescue is not only proud to recognize these individuals, but highlight the importance of being properly trained in CPR. Every community member can potentially assist others, and even, save a life," Cano said.
As a result of these two incidents and the heroism that those people displayed, Medford Fire-Rescue said that it will recognize that diligence in a ceremony on Thursday. The full details are below:
Medford Fire-Rescue’s Citizen Recognition
Thursday, January 10 at 1:00 p.m.
Food 4 Less
2230 Biddle Rd
Medford, OR 97504