We recently saw the heart-warming story on television of the desperate plea from a grateful man trying to track down the ten strangers who saved his life on a Victorian beach nine months ago.
Sean Purcell, 37, was going for a jog along a beach in Torquay, Victoria with his dog when he suddenly collapsed face down in the water. Unbeknownst to the unconscious Sean, over the next twenty minutes a group of approximately ten complete strangers orchestrated a successful CPR procedure which resulted in his life being saved. While a group of them took turns administering CPR, one lady had the good sense to run to the nearby golf course and bring back a defibrillator which ultimately is the reason Sean is still with us today.
Sean’s heart attack was sudden and he had no previous history of heart conditions. In fact, Sean was a former personal trainer and in ‘perfect’ health with the exception of a recent lung infection which attacked the wall of his heart and was the cause of the cardiac arrest. The paramedics arrived 20 minutes after he collapsed and praised those on the beach that helped Sean and saved his life.
Sean was in an induced coma for 5 days and now has a permanent defibrillator inserted under his collar-bone. Throughout his recovery Sean had little luck in tracking down his saviours to personally thank them until he posted a photo of himself recovering in hospital on Facebook in a bid to reconnect with those who helped him and saved his life on the beach.
Sean was fortunate enough that those who were around him at the time he collapsed were trained to some degree in First Aid. The lady who sourced the defibrillator worked in the health industry and as part of her job is required to keep up-to-date with First Aid procedures. “I had my life firmly in their hands and can’t believe what an amazing job they did.” Said Sean.
The husband and father of five was successfully reunited with some of the good Samaritans through his social media post. “Thank you just doesn’t cut it. Words can’t describe how thankful we are.” Said wife, Kelly Purcell. Happy endings such as this are what we are all about at First Aid Accident and Emergency. We give our students the tools and confidence to assist those in need because you just never know when you’ll need it.