PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A long-time Penguins fan from Beaver was headed for his first visit to Consol Energy Center on Feb. 22, when his heart stopped beating.
Quick action by a Pittsburgh Police officer and others at the scene brought him back to life.
“I went down,” David Allen recalls. “Grabbed onto my female companion. Luckily, we were right where Officer Hodges was working his traffic signals.”
“I started immediate chest compressions,” says Forrest Hodges. The heart attack victim had already stopped breathing.
Officer Hodges wasn’t the only one who rose to the occasion that evening. As he applied CPR, an ex-army medic came over and kept Allen’s airways open. And a bystander rushed across the street to the Marriott Hotel, and came back with an employee with a defibrillator.
“The victim was shocked with AED,” Hodges says. “Milliseconds later, he gasped for breath. and continued for a few minutes like that, where he would fade out. We resumed with chest compressions. Then the medics showed up.”
The 66-year-old fan woke up in Mercy Hospital.
“I believe that maybe 85 percent of the medical staff from Mercy, nurses and doctors, made it a point to visit me, just to shake my hand,” Allen says.
The patient had come back from the dead, thanks to the quick actions of friends he never knew.
“My goal, when I’m able to get around and function, be able to drive and everything like that, I’ll meet those people in person,” he promises. “That’s the next thing I want to do in my life that’s important.”
“I don’t have the words to explain how happy I am that this man survived,” Officer Hodges says.
“If it wasn’t for them,” Allen says, “I wouldn’t be here.”