Detective Sergeant Greg Payne is thankful automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) are made available to the public.
Shortly after arriving at an Aurora recreation facility to play squash on October 6, Payne heard someone collapse behind him.
“When I looked back, a man was on the ground about 10 metres away,” he recalled. “I thought he was having a seizure, but when I moved him away from a nearby concrete wall and placed him in a recovery position, I realized he was in dire straits.”
Payne immediately applied chest compressions to the victim and yelled out for someone to call 9-1-1 believing the man to be suffering a sudden cardiac arrest.
“I also knew there was an AED in the building, so I asked someone to go and grab it,” he said.
Firefighter Brian Erskine, who was playing squash at the time of the incident, joined Payne and a nurse in the rescue operation.
Thank God for those AED machines. It was the first time that I had combined CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) with that machine and I now appreciate how amazing those devices are
“When I realized it was a medical emergency, I went it action,” said Erskine, who has been with Mississauga Fire Service for the last eight years. “We have the skills to recognize cardiac emergencies. I am highly trained and educated to do this kind of thing, which we are called upon to perform on a regular basis.”
The victim was revived after the first AED charge.
“He started breathing on his own and he was conscious,” said Payne. “Thank God for those AED machines. It was the first time that I had combined CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) with that machine and I now appreciate how amazing those devices are. Having that machine close by in the building was key to saving that man’s life.”
The victim is recovering in hospital and due to undergo heart surgery.
The Toronto Police Service has partnered with the Mikey Network to have 60 AEDs installed in police facilities across the city.