Gov. Quinn honors Dr. Vince Bufalino, Edward Health & Fitness Center employees as Heartsaver Heroes.
Quinn honors 5 local Heartsaver Heroes
February 24, 2010
From Submitted Reports
Five Napervillians were among the honorees Tuesday as Gov. Pat Quinn presented nine Heartsaver Hero Awards during American Heart Month.
Heartsaver Heroes are individuals who have either saved a life using an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) or served as a citizen advocate in the growing grassroots movement to make AED's as common as fire extinguishers in Illinois.
Locals honored were Dr. Vincent Bufalino, Justin Gedner, Eric Gustafson, Laura LaRue and Tracy Trimble.
During a Christmas holiday dinner in December, Dan Biggins suffered sudden cardiac arrest and collapsed. Thinking quickly, Bufalino rushed to retrieve the AED he keeps in the trunk of his car. With the help of three cardiac nurses who were attending the party, he was able to stabilize Biggins until the paramedics arrived, saving his life.
Early one morning this December, Lance Lawson was playing his regular game of basketball at the Naperville YMCA. While playing, Lawson collapsed in the gymnasium. As the lifeguard on duty, Gedner immediately responded to the man-down situation by grabbing the AED just outside the gym. After safely administering it, he saved Lawson's life. As a survivor, Lawson is now interested in becoming a paramedic..
Shortly after noon on June 26 at the Edward Health and Fitness Center in Naperville, 59-year-old Jack Hummel passed out after over-exerting himself during his workout. Upon failing to find a pulse, Gustafson and LaRue started CPR while Trimble administered the AED. After being shocked twice, Hummel stabilized and was taken to the hospital where he was later fitted for a pacemaker.
"Automated External Defibrillators are saving lives across Illinois and across the nation," Quinn said. "There are people standing in this room who would not be here today to tell their stories if it weren't for an easily accessible AED and a quick thinking Illinois citizen who knew how to use it. I salute these heroes and encourage all residents to store AEDs in easily accessible places."
Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) are portable, life-saving devices that can be used to restore natural heart rhythm to someone in cardiac arrest. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Illinois, claiming the lives of more than 250,000 Americans each year. The American Red Cross estimates that up to 100,000 people across the country could be saved if AED machines were more readily accessible.
On Jan. 21, Quinn signed Senate Bill 1371 (Public Act 96-0873), which amended the Physical Fitness Facility Medical Emergency Preparedness Act to ensure that AEDs were provided at both indoor and outdoor sporting events.
In 2004, Quinn, then lieutenant governor, worked with the Illinois General Assembly to pass the landmark Colleen O'Sullivan Law requiring defibrillators in schools, indoor park district facilities and physical fitness facilities. O'Sullivan, a staff attorney for the Illinois House of Representatives, died of heart complications in 2002 after exercising at a health club.
The Illinois Department of Public Health also manages the Heartsaver AED Fund, which helps make AED's more affordable by providing matching grants to schools, indoor park district facilities and fitness facilities.
Illinois citizens are encouraged to become Heartsaver Heroes by donating to the fund by writing to: Heartsaver AED Fund, IDPH Division of EMS, 525 W. Jefferson, Springfield, IL 62761.
Naperville, Illinois (IL) - Edward Hospital and Health Services