FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - An 80-year-old woman who is alive because of the help she received from first responders thanked her rescuers during a heartwarming reunion.
7News cameras on Wednesday captured Ethel Carter as she met the men who saved her life.
“Where are the two guys that came to the house?” she said.
“That would be us,” said FLFR Firefighter-Paramedic Reice Rahman as he and two others walked toward Carter.
“Oh, my goodness,” she said as she shook their hands.
“You look great,” said one of the paramedics.
“I’m so glad to see you,” said Carter.
A few weeks back, Carter wasn’t feeling quite herself and she called 911. Shortly after, a crew from Fort Lauderdale’s Fire Station #46 responded to her call.
“We thought it was a run-of-the-mill call, we walked in and it came as a fainting, and she was with us for a little bit, and when something happened, we got to the back of the rescue, and she just went completely unconscious,” said Rahman.
When Carter went into cardiac arrest, the crew immediately started CPR.
“We did what we had to do, and she lost her heart rate twice and got her back,” said Rahman.
“Without early CPR, you could lose brain function, and that’s really the thing about CPR,” said Chief Medical Officer at Broward Health Medical Center Dr. James Roach. “That cardiopulmonary resuscitation gives the brain the oxygen it needs so that we can get you to the hospital and do the lifesaving measures on the heart, and to get the heart pumping again.”
That’s exactly what happened in Carter’s case. Her heart started to beat again.
Firefighter paramedics brought Carter to Broward Health Medical Center, where she recovered.
“These guys, they mean everything to me,” said Carter. “It’s like I got a second chance because of you all, and I’m really thankful.”
On Wednesday, FLFR honored her as a survivor.
“The Cardiac Arrest Survivor Award for how great you’ve done and your rapid recovery and the fact that you’re still here with us and you get a second chance,” said an FLFR official as he named Carter the certificate.
Carter has received a second chance with her husband, four daughters and grandchildren.
Carter’s daughters, Roberta Carter and Janice Alexander, expressed their gratitude.
“It wasn’t her time. She still has a lot to do with her grandkids and her kids, so we’re just so thankful,” said Roberta.
“We’re very grateful that you were there, that you showed up,” said Alexander.
As for Carter, she continues to recover with a smile.
“I am really, really grateful for these guys. I really am,” she said.
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