Teen rescue involved more heroes

Published 12:05 am Saturday, September 25, 2010

Last week, a student-athlete on John Essex High School’s volleyball team passed out and stopped breathing. On Wednesday, The Demopolis Times reported the story of how three heroes — JEHS athletics director Donald Constant and nurses Lolethia Hosea and Stacey Hosea — helped keep Shantina Wheeler breathing until the ambulance arrived.
They were not the only ones on the scene working to rescue Wheeler. Emergency medical technician Richard Rogers of the South Marengo Volunteer Fire Department, EMT paramedic Danny Haney and registered nurse Tammy Smith were on the scene as well.
“We got paged out to go to a camphouse fire,” Rogers said. “I was setting up the crews to go to this fire eight or 10 miles away. I got to the squad hall about a mile down the road, rolled the doors up, and the next thing I knew, they paged us to go to a student down at Sweet Water High School.
“We were about 4 miles away from the school. I told the two people there that I was going to the school because I am an EMT medic. As I was going, I was talking on the radio to CommCenter 911, requesting to get up with Danny Haney. He lives in Sweet Water and is a licensed EMT paramedic. I’m an EMT basic.”
Rogers said when he arrived, he saw Wheeler, two people working on her and a registered nurse, Tammy Smith.
“Danny got there for a short period of time after I did,” Rogers said. “Tammy was working with (Wheeler), kneeling down to her. When I got there, I handed (Smith) an oxygen bottle, and I set it up for a non-rebreathing mask. Tammy said she was not familiar with the gauge, so I turned it on 10 or 11 liters.
“We put that on (Wheeler), and I had an AED defibrillator that I carry in my truck. I set it there with my first aid box.”
Several people contributed to helping the young student restore her breathing before being taken to the hospital that night. While professional emergency responders often go unnamed in newspaper articles or TV features about life-or-death situations, that does not diminish the importance of the work that they do every day.
A number of heroes took part in last Thursday’s rescue, some named, some unnamed. All of their actions are worthy of praise and pride for taking the time and using their skills to help in this medical emergency.

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