Thursday, July 23, 2009

Small world


.....






When I was a rather new paramedic, I was on a rescue team called "STAR" (Special Trauma And Rescue) This was before the fire department had anything to do with paramedicine here in San Diego. The six of us were responsible for SWAT, US Coast Guard, Secret Service, and cliff rescues. It eventually led to what I'm doing now...
In 1988 three college kids were drinking beers on the bluffs high above Black's Beach. One guy fell. The only girl there, Marissa, sent the other guy to call 911 and started climbing down the cliff to see if she could help. The guy went to his car and fell asleep. Next morning he woke up and saw his buddy on the rocks below the cliff, and finally went back to call 911.
I hadn't been a medic long but dude looked pretty dead to me. I rappelled down to pronounce him, and when I got to him he was stiff. I was about to start back up when I noticed a hand sticking out behind another rock.
Marissa had fallen too. Her chest was collapsed, her pelvis was broken. She'd go in and out of consciousness. No blood pressure. I radioed the lifeguards to get a surfboat over; we carried her through the surf, put her in the boat, and motored over to the boatramp. On the way there her heart stopped so I shocked her (the old way, with the paddles) and got a pulse back. That happened on the way to the hospital again, and once in the hospital. After emergency surgery and lots of physical therapy, she was able to bring cookies by the fire station.
So today, AnnaMarie had a lady over for lunch along with her daughter for a playdate. She is new to Julian, and AnnaMarie was asking her life story, and she talked about normal childhood and such, "But there was a major traumatic incident in my life". The more she talked about it (she even mentioned "STAR Team") and she remembered a guy with blue eyes... AnnaMarie figured out the connection

8 comments:

Tina said...

Pretty cool. :)

You are such a hero!

Lee said...

Very cool indeed.

prestoffcenter said...

Way cool story...

The essence of your job puts you in this position every day and sometimes more than once per day. I figure you might be dulled by it because of the sheer number of times you have had direct influence over some other's path. Maybe you HAVE to shrug them all off just to remain grounded.

This story got me thinking back...

I have had several points in time where personal action has dramatically affected the outcome of an event to the positive and I felt glad I was there.

Tho- I have ONE instance that I can recall where my direct miniscule action saved me and 3 others from a very drastic change in life.

It was no big deal at the time, but looking back today just makes me go wow- that was close!

There's probably alot more of these things happening all around us and all the time.

Anybody else have one or more of these?

flyingvan said...

You tease!! I want to hear about your miniscule act.

Lee said...

I'm sure I have thousands. Just cannot recall any...

Tina said...

Let's see Lee: you directed the traffic when the little girl on the bike was hit by the car so the emergency vehicles could get right to her immediately on arrival...

You jumped out of our car & moved the fallen streetlight off the freeway so that it wouldn't cause a crash when cars were already braking hard to avoid it...

And anytime you've ever noticed anyone in any kind of danger, you are always one of the first people to drop what you're doing and race to help - including when my dad fell off a ladder.

You're the knight, but Steve would have to be a paladin, because he heals too :P

shoo said...

Awesome Steve...amazing how life's connections happen.

princess slea said...

excellent coincidence for you, but i keep thinking about the dude who fell asleep in his car instead of calling 911. he must still wonder if the other friend would be alive were his own actions different.