Cardiac arrest at age 45

Thu, 10/16/2008 - 3:42pm
By: Letters to the ...

PTC paramedics perform ‘miracle on Bellenden Drive’

The morning of Sept. 22, 2008 started out with gorgeous Georgia weather, a great day to do a workout outside with my two good friends, Mark Metzger and Mark Robertson

Both of these guys are in incredible shape and always challenge me to do my very best. We started off with an hour of swimming at the Kedron pool and then on to the triathlon cycles for an hour of bike riding. This is where my problem began.

Shortly after getting on the bike, I began to experience back pain. I told my friends I did not feel right and wanted to return home. Luckily for me, my good friends decided to follow me home to Bellenden Drive.

As I approached my very steep hill, I decided to walk my bike but began to feel progressively worst. My friends now wondered what could be going on with their friend who still looked perfectly normal.

Mark Metzger called 911 as I sat on the grass realizing I was in serious trouble. My miracle began with the swift arrival of the Peachtree City Fire Department Emergency Medical Team.

They began their assessment, took my vitals and elected to put me in the ambulance for transport to Piedmont Fayette Hospital. This is when my life changed forever.

As soon as I was in the ambulance, I went into cardiac arrest. What could be happening to a 45-year-old man in good shape?

My two expert paramedics, Firefighter Pat Patrick and Firefighter John Shires went right to work on me. They had to use the emergency defibrillator to bring me back to life. I was having a heart attack and was in extremely critical condition. The race to save my life began.

There is another story that does not always get visibility: the impact of this type of event on your family.

My wife Beverly came down to the ambulance and witnessed her perfectly healthy husband she saw just a few hours ago slip into cardiac arrest. My children David (18), Emily (15) and Daniel (6) were now thinking their young and vibrant dad may not make it through the next few hours.

My wife activated our network of friends and relatives to begin praying for my survival and the welfare of our family.

As a patient, I was unconscious and did not have to witness how difficult my plight was for my family. Their prayers and support strengthened my conviction to survive the day. Just like me, it was a day that changed their lives forever.

I am very grateful to my wife Beverly, my family and all the wonderful friends and family who prayed for me on this dark day.

This outstanding Peachtree City EMS team of Pat Patrick, John Shires, Joshua Crawford, Brian Davis and Kevin McMullen safely transported me to Piedmont Fayette Hospital, where their advanced cardiac support team took over my care.

Again, I entered the emergency room, where they started critical medications to stabilize my vitals. Again, I went into cardiac arrest shortly after my arrival in the emergency room and would have a total of three times my heart stopped beating.

A great team of physicians and nurses stabilized me with life-saving procedures and medications so I could be flown by helicopter to Piedmont Hospital Atlanta for emergency cardiac catheterization.

I arrived safely at Piedmont Atlanta where my expert cardiologist, Dr. Harold Carlson, diagnosed my problem and inserted a life-saving stent into my cardiac artery, which immediately corrected my problem.

As I was recovering in the hospital, I realized just how many people where involved in saving my life on Sept. 22, 2008. So many of my friends and relatives were praying for my survival, my family and my future welfare.

I am very thankful to be living in Peachtree City where the finest fire department-EMS team arrived for me, for the outstanding emergency room team at the Piedmont Fayette Hospital and then on to a world class cardiac care facility at the Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta.

My life changed in that ambulance, my heart stopped and I was brought back to life through great medical care. Again, I realized how precious life can be.

How fortunate I am to live in a great community filled with so many caring people, people who are on the front lines of our community every day, ready to take action during an emergency.

There are no words that can be spoken that fully say how much I appreciate them. I do know our good Lord guided my well-being that day and put my care into the hands of a great medical team right here in Peachtree City, Georgia.

I am convinced if this event occurred anywhere else, I would not be here today.

Pete Conley

Bellenden Drive

Peachtree City, Ga.

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Submitted by fayetteparent on Wed, 10/29/2008 - 7:03am.

I am very glad things turned out well for you on that day in Sept. You have written a very heartfelt letter. I was moved by it. I agree that we have a superb medical team in our ems system and at the hospital. I am very happy that they were there for you and your family.

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