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Quick action saves life at Mathews YMCA

A Mathews County resident is recovering in the hospital after his heart stopped beating on Monday, requiring resuscitation by staff and friends at the Mathews Family YMCA.

Dan Webster, 76, of Susan, had been working out at the Y when he collapsed suddenly and fell to the floor, hitting his head on a piece of equipment. Dennis Austin, who regularly works out with Webster at the Y, said that Webster had blood in his mouth and on his head, was unconscious, and had no heartbeat or respirations.

Austin said that YMCA employee Joanie Beatley initiated CPR and asked for someone to call 911 and grab the Y’s automated external defibrillator (AED). The AED is a piece of equipment that checks for a heart rhythm and gives instructions on whether to administer an electric shock via pads and wires that the rescuer attaches to the body.

Austin, who was an EMT in a corporate environment for 30 years, said he had experience both with administering CPR and with using an AED, so he attached the ...

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