Imagine going on a family vacation to the beach. The feeling of sand between your toes and sounds of the rolling of the waves. The sun shines hot as both children and adults enjoy the water. Imagine now, that you hear panicked cries for help. A man you don’t know is carrying a man named Alex to shore and is begging for aid. What would you do? Thankfully, Joe Schmid had been trained for this scenario.
On the weekend following independence day, it was a pleasant day at the beach in Oceanside, CA. Around 4:30 PM Joe Schmid, Webelos Den Leader for pack 722, saw a young man in the water struggling to pull an older man to shore. He yelled and waved his arms several times to get the on-duty lifeguard’s attention before rushing into the surf. As Schmid reached the two men in the water, the younger man cried out, “Please help! I don’t know what to do!” The two supported the older man as they waded to shore and others joined in to help.
Schmid positioned the victim to expel water from his lungs. The younger man, now under the full weight of distress, began to pray and seek divine intervention. Within seconds of pulling the man onto the beach, the lifeguard on scene began checking the vital signs of the older man. The victim’s face was turning blue and foaming at the mouth. The young lifeguard seemed to freeze in the intensity.
The situation looked grim, but Schmid’s training took over and he began chest compressions at a rate of 100 compressions a minute. Throughout the compressions, the victim continued to expectorate more fluids but Schmid continued to do compressions until he was too exhausted to continue.
The victim’s wife was crying and calling his name,”Alex! Alex!”
Schmid called for relief as his own muscles fatigued. He was relieved as emergency personnel arrived. Alex was taken to the hospital where he recovered and began breathing on his own.
According to the CDC:
From 2005-2014, there were an average of 3,536 fatal unintentional drownings (non-boating related) annually in the United States — about ten deaths per day. An additional 332 people died each year from drowning in boating-related incidents. About one in five people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger.
We, at ProTrainings and StudentCPR, believe that telling stories like this one is important. These stories show the courage of rescuers and why CPR training is important. Through our products and services we give each of our customers the tools they need to do what is necessary in an emergency situation. We do this because life matters.
Joe Schmid received his training at ProCPR. If you would like to take this training or know someone who needs to be recertified go to procpr.org