A man died at Crestwood last Monday. I wish I were joking, but I’m not. During a men’s league basketball game, Roy, who was playing on a team with his son and son-in-law, collapsed. As it turns out, he had significant blockage in one of his major arteries, which has the ominous nickname of “The Widowmaker.” When this artery fails, death usually occurs within five minutes. Roy died that night at Crestwood.
But that’s not the end of the story. Players from the other team immediately began to perform CPR on Roy. A third person knew the church had an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) machine and ran to get it. An AED is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses life-threatening heart arrhythmias and treats them through the application of electrical therapy, which helps the heart reestablish an effective rhythm. All this in a device just a little bigger than a toaster.
The AED was hooked up to Roy and it did its job. Roy was taken to the hospital, where two stents were put in to open up his arteries. He was released later in the week with a clean bill of health from his doctor. I had a long talk with Roy over the phone this weekend, and he sent this note he wanted me to share with you:
Dear Members of Crestwood Christian Church,
As many of you may have heard, on Monday night, June 25,while playing basketball in the Crestwood Summer League, I collapsed on the court with a heart attack. Had it not been for the quick action of two members of the opposing team, Cameron and Andrew, and Crestwood Christian Church being equipped with an AED, I would not be alive today to write this letter. Cameron administered CPR and Andrew operated the AED. I had no pulse and the AED shocked me back to life. My family and I are truly thankful to Crestwood Christian Church for having the gym equipped with the AED. I am living proof that quick action in an emergency and the availability of an AED save lives. There are not enough words to express our gratitude. I simply want to say thank you to Cameron, Andrew, and to the members of Crestwood Christian Church for saving my life. You are my heroes.
Roy Noble & Family
Words cannot even begin to express gratitude to God for this situation, but it’s a very powerful reminder that little things we do make a difference. You’ve probably walked by the AED machine dozens of times, not even aware it was there. This church made the decision to purchase an AED, hoping it would never have to be used. Each week, ushers transport the AED from the Mission Center to the sanctuary and back, hoping it will never have to be used. And yet, last Monday, it was used and Roy’s life was saved.
I wanted to share this story with you because we need to be reminded that the things we do really matter. We can talk abstractly about how the church’s mission is to transform people’s lives or “save” them from an existence apart from God, but last Monday, through the efforts of some alert players and Crestwood’s foresight to have an AED machine, a life was really saved. Thanks be to God!