FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. (WDVM) — WDVM reported on Fairfax County Fire and Rescue saving lives through CPR resuscitation, and how they track the outcomes of the individuals they have saved. Last year, Ron Howard made their list of people saved when he suddenly went into cardiac arrest.
Howard was in D.C. from his home state of Kentucky to visit his son and go to the World Series. He never expected what would happen to him when he was on his way home.
Howard was heading to the airport on the Metro, when he missed his train, getting on the next. Little did he know, the woman on that train, Connie Flemmings, would save his life.
“There’s nothing I would change. If it happened again, I’d be there to save the next, if everybody tried to help each other, then maybe this world could be changed for the better,” said Flemmings.
Flemmings performed CPR on Howard before the medic units arrived. Station 25 said Flemmings makes their job easier because they have a much higher success rate when CPR is performed immediately.
“Thank god for Connie being where she was, when she was. I wish more people would step up and do what she did,” stated Andrea, a dispatched medic from station 25.
The medic unit transported Howard to Reston Hospital. Although he doesn’t have much recollection of the events, he believes God was present in keeping him calm and placing him in the right hands at the right time.
“In the ambulance, I remember coming to and hearing the siren, but it was like it was in slow motion. I could only remember thinking, I’ve got to help whoever’s in here. And then it donned on me, I was the one who was in there… “When I arrived at the hospital, a doctor came in there at Reston Hospital and he told me I was one of the luckiest men on the earth,” expressed Howard.
Howard was in the hospital for only three days and received a pacemaker defibrillator implant. Since then, he’s made some lifestyle changes.
“I’ve had a new normal since October of last year. My new normal consisted of just walking through the house,” stated Howard.
Now he’s walking two miles every day, has lost 35 pounds and is back to preaching at his church.
Howard says he’s made a large realization over the past 11 months, “The most enjoyable period of my life, mainly because I realized, first hand, how brief life can be.”
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue holds what they call “Resuscitation Reunions” for the people they have saved. So far this year, Fairfax Fire and Rescue has saved 88 individuals, up from 74 when this story was previously reported.