Lisa Wiles had been in the kitchen preparing dinner one evening in April 2020 when she overheard her husband, Dan, yell an obscenity from the opposite side of the kitchen. She assumed it had something to do with the news. Nonetheless, she went to see how he was doing.
She yelled at him to see if he would react and then rushed to the phone to dial 911 for assistance. Dan had been experiencing difficulties with his cardiac rhythm at different points in the last several years, and she was fearful that this might be the case again.
New York Woman Who Saved Her Husband’s Life Has Inspired Others To Learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
Dan, who was 57 at the time, was in cardiac arrest. Lisa, who was 51 at the time, had received CPR instruction almost two decades previously. Lisa pulled Dan to the ground and immediately started compressions, following the instructions of the 911 operator.
A few moments later, an officer out from Onondaga County Sheriff’s Department broke through the door of their house outside Syracuse, New York, and connected up an external defibrillator automated to the family’s medical equipment.
The CPR was maintained until a second deputy came and relieved Lisa of her duties when the equipment showed Dan’s heart was not in shockable rhythms. After a second effort to shock Dan’s heart using the AED, it was determined that his heart was not in a shockable rhythm.
A paramedic team responded with a defibrillator, which was then utilized by them. This time, though, the machine indicated shockable rhythm and delivered a shocking shock. Dan’s heart began to beat again 13 minutes after it had stopped beating before.
Because of the COVID-19 epidemic, Lisa was only permitted to spend a short amount of time in the emergency room. A nurse had told her that he might be confused and repeat himself from time to time. As Lisa came into the room, Dan pointed to his chest and motioned for her to inquire whether she had performed CPR.
Dan spent the first three months of his recovery time puttingtering around the home. It wasn’t until many months later that the gravity of what he’d gone through began to sink in for him. Dan was having difficulty sleeping, so he sought assistance from a therapist.
He also had to cope with an experience that was both physically and emotionally taxing: leaping into an ice pond in the middle of winter to save Quincy, the 55-pound German Shepherd the couple had acquired as a puppy while Dan was recovering from his injuries. Dan pulled Quincy out of the water and then got out himself.
Lisa struggled with worry and the dread that Dan’s heart could stop again for months after performing the heroic deed that saved his life. Lisa found comfort in learning more about cardiopulmonary resuscitation. She was taken aback by the extremes of the statistical results.
Lisa advertised the program on social media and had so much interest that they were able to organize two classes in Marcellus and one in Rochester as a result of her efforts. During the course of the courses, 51 people received CPR and AED certifications. They also participated in a marathon walk down the Erie Canal, where Dan had worked as a boat captain for 35 years, earning $3,500 for MAVES by selling T-shirts and other items they had made.