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6/2/2011 6:00:00 AM
The heart matters to NAHM
AHRON SHERMAN/MinerPeople gather at VFW Post 10386 to give thanks and witness the donation of an automated external defibrillator. From left: NWAHMs Bob Walton and Kris Haynes, KRMCs Ryan Kennedy, VFWs Mike Breighner and Mark Catt, KFDs Joe Dorner, Mayor John Salem and KFD Battalion Chief Bill Johston.

People gather at VFW Post 10386 to give thanks and witness the donation of an automated external defibrillator. From left: NWAHMs Bob Walton and Kris Haynes, KRMCs Ryan Kennedy, VFWs Mike Breighner and Mark Catt, KFDs Joe Dorner, Mayor John Salem and KFD Battalion Chief Bill Johston.

Ahron Sherman
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - No matter your age, gender or race, sudden cardiac arrest can strike without warning at any time - and often leads to death.

With that in mind, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10386 received a donation of an automated external defibrillator from Northwest Arizona Heart Matters - the local chapter of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Association - Wednesday.

Before officially donating the defibrillator, some recognition was delivered.

First, Kingman Fire Department Assistant Chief Joe Dorner accepted a "Hero Award" on behalf of Bob Casson, a KFD paramedic.

While off-duty in December 2010, Casson responded to a call for a person found unresponsive. When he arrived, he found the subject unconscious, not breathing and without a pulse. Casson started hands-only CPR and continued till emergency responders showed up and started emergency treatment for cardiac arrest. Without Casson's efforts, the subject would have likely died.

The person Casson saved is Dr. Ramesh Tandon, a general surgeon at Kingman Regional Medical center.

Next, KRMC Chief Operating Officer Ryan Kennedy accepted a "Survivors Award" on behalf of Tandon, who attended the event via video link.

In a letter of thanks to Casson, Tandon wrote: "I cannot express how grateful I am to you for saving my life. It is because of you that I am able to celebrate my grandson's first birthday and dance with my granddaughter at her wedding this week. It says a lot of a man's character when even off-duty, he heeds the call that another life is in trouble. True nobility lies in the heart of men; and Mr. Casson, you are truly a hero."

After the award ceremony, NAMH's Bob Walton explained that Gov. Jan Brewer named June 1-7, 2011, "CPR/AED Awareness Week." With that in mind, Walton handed an automated external defibrillator to the VFW post's Commander Mark Catt.

The defibrillator walks people through the process, Catt said. That way there is no fear to push the button. If a subject has a pulse, the device will not let the person in control administer a shock, he added.

Since the devices are too expensive to put in every home or business, it is best to make sure there are defibrillators at large public spaces, big restaurants and similar locations.

Fear often stops people from helping, Catt said, but automated external defibrillators take fear out of the equation because they do the hard stuff - like analyzing heart rhythm - automatically.

Mission Bank

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Reader Comments

Posted: Thursday, June 2, 2011
Article comment by: Ramesh Tandon MD

Very well written aticle, awareness incommunity about sudden cardiac death,it can be prevented with promt treatment,I am living example of immediate help when my heart stopped.Hope this article will spread the message to people in community, that there is hope insituation of sudden cardiac death. thanks Ramesh TANDON

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