Philanthropy Helping to Save Lives in Pepperell
A new, lifesaving machine was used for the first time in Pepperell this weekend. It’s called the Lucas 3, and it plays a crucial role in CPR. It is also the reason a 67-year-old man is alive today.
It’s a device that performs perfect chest compressions for as long as needed. On Saturday that made all the difference in a house on Hollis Street.
“I immediately flew up the stairs and saw my father laying on the floor,” says Derek Heath. His dad had suffered a cardiac arrest.
“He was laying flat on the ground. He was unresponsive,” says Pepperell Police Officer Michael Kenney, one of the first people to answer the 911 call.
Police performed CPR and used a portable defibrillator to try and shock Starlin Heath back to life, but it didn’t work. Then EMT’s from the Pepperell Fire Department arrived with the Lucas 3 Chest Compression Device.
“It comes with a board that is positioned under the patient. It clips on either side of the board. The plunger sets it into the center of the patient’s chest. And then we hit start,” explains Lt. Benjamin Simmons, a Pepperell paramedic.
The advantage of the Lucas 3 is that it never gets tired, unlike people performing manual CPR. “That machine just kept going to work. And finally I heard the words, he had a pulse,” says Derek Heath.
The entire process worked and Starlin Heath is recovering, thanks to skilled professionals and the new, lifesaving tool. “Without them we’d be planning funeral arrangements today. I’ve got to give them credit, they never stopped, they were persistent,” says Derek Heath.
The Pepperell Fire Dept. was able to buy the device with several grants, one of which came through the Greater Lowell Community Foundation. Mr. Heath is out of intensive care and has moved to a regular cardiac unit.