CPR Save By Assistant GVFD Chief Reinforces The Importance Of Hands-Only CPR

There are more than 356,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in the United States each year, according to the American Heart Association. Many are fatal because proper CPR is not administered right away. Thankfully, when someone recently went into cardiac arrest at a Golden Valley gym, Assistant Golden Valley Fire Chief Bethany Brunsell, a trained first responder and Hands-Only CPR instructor, was there to administer CPR and help save the man’s life.

Brunsell was off-duty and enjoying her early morning workout May 25 when she noticed one of her friends and fellow gym members was on the floor having difficulty breathing. Gym staff wasted no time calling 911, and not long after, the man stopped breathing. Brunsell immediately began Hands-Only CPR while a staff member grabbed an automated external defibrillator (AED). Brunsell then used the AED to administer one shock before continuing CPR until he regained a pulse and started breathing.

During this time, the Golden Valley Police Department arrived to assist and a North Memorial Ambulance arrived to transport the man to the hospital, where doctors confirmed the heart attack and stated it was the quick action by Brunsell and others that saved the man’s life.

Brunsell said there was a moment where her mentality switched from a “workout mode” to “lifesaving mode,” and she credits all of it to her Hands-Only CPR training.

Hands-Only CPR is a skill for more than just first responders. In-fact, the Golden Valley Fire Department (GVFD) encourages anyone who is interested to learn. The GVFD plans to hold Hands-Only CPR courses at Brookview July 13, Sept 16, and Nov 16, all at 7:30 pm. Check the City website in the coming weeks for details.

Learn Life-Saving Skills As A Golden Valley Firefighter

Without the knowledge and experience Brunsell acquired through her firefighter training, that cardiac arrest could have ended much differently. Her assistance is a reminder that the City of Golden Valley needs more trained first responders in and around the community, and more specifically, it needs more paid, on-call firefighters.

By joining the GVFD, firefighter recruits learn an abundance of life-saving skills, including Hands-Only CPR and how to use an AED.

Primary duties of paid, on-call firefighters include:

  • responding to calls for service, including but not limited to fires, rescues, and EMS,
  • assisting with apparatus and equipment testing and maintenance, as well as building maintenance,
  • operating firefighting vehicles and equipment as needed

GVFD recruiting season is just beginning. If you ever considered becoming a paid, on-call firefighter or want to learn more about the profession, check out any of the recruitment events below. Applications are due Aug 9, 2021, 11:59 pm. All events take place at Fire Station 1, 7800 Golden Valley Rd.

  • Recruitment Meeting: Thu, July 8, 9:30 am & 6:30 pm (attendance strongly recommended)
  • Recruitment Meeting: Thu, July 29, 9:30 am & 6:30 pm (attendance strongly recommended)
  • Fire Recruitment Expo: Sat, July 31, 9 am – (attendance strongly recommended)

For more information on joining the GVFD, visit the City website.

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