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Paramedic treating woman in cardiac arrest has heart attack

A UK woman has reunited with the emergency responder who collapsed from a heart attack in her living room — while treating her for cardiac arrest.

Daisy Devane, 31, lost consciousness on the sofa in her Bedfordshire home in June 2022. Her partner, Eammon, 33, performed CPR before the East of England Ambulance Service Trust’s crews arrived.

Senior emergency medical technician Jeremy Williams, 55, was timing her chest compressions when he suddenly felt “excruciating” pain in his chest.

“I’ve come off a motorbike at high speed, so I know what pain is but have never felt anything like I did on that day,” Williams recalled to SWNS.

His teammates quickly realized what was happening. Some continued to shock Devane — while others turned their attention to Williams to give him an electrocardiogram.

They discovered he was having a heart attack.

Daisy Devane, middle, lost consciousness in her Bedfordshire home in 2022. Her partner, Eammon, left, performed CPR before Jeremy Williams, right, and the rest of the East of England Ambulance Service Trust’s crews arrived. James Linsell-Clark / SWNS

The team worked side by side to manage both patients and transfer them to separate hospitals — Williams was taken to Lister Hospital in Hertfordshire, while Devane was transported to Bedford Hospital in Bedfordshire.

“Jeremy’s heart rate and blood pressure dropped dramatically while we were on the way to hospital, and at one point, I thought he was going to go into cardiac arrest,” said Shaun Whittington, an advanced paramedic who oversaw the dual care.

Williams underwent emergency surgery to have two stents fitted to unblock the arteries around his heart.

Devane, meanwhile, spent 33 days in the hospital.

She doesn’t remember the episode, as she lost three weeks’ worth of memory, but noted that she is so “grateful” to Williams and the other responders.

She met with Williams in February 2023 and reunited with him last month, saying she wished she had done it sooner.

“I heard about Jeremy after. I’m so grateful to him and grateful he was OK,” said Devane, an area safety manager and first aid trainer. “You can’t make it up. He saved my life.”

Williams was timing Devane’s chest compressions when he suddenly felt “excruciating” pain in his chest. James Linsell-Clark / SWNS

Devane said Eammon, a store manager, found her on the sofa unresponsive and not breathing. He happened to be home sick that day with COVID-19.

He did chest compressions for 12 minutes before paramedics arrived.

“They were working on me for 50 minutes,” Devane said. “I had five shocks before they were able to successfully resuscitate me.”

Williams said he was on the scene for 10 minutes when he abruptly didn’t feel well.

“It was one of those things which never, ever happens,” Williams said. ”I can laugh about it now because I’m glad to be here, but if it hadn’t been for my colleagues it would be a completely different story.”

Devane ended up marrying Eammon, whom she met in 2014, in an emotional ceremony in July 2023. Katheryn Croft / SWNS

Whittington said it was a sweaty, intense shift he will never forget.

He shared that within just 40 minutes of treatment, Williams was a completely different person.

”When we arrived, he looked like he was about to die, but after the surgery, it was like he had just come home from a holiday,” Whittington said.

“I’ve been in this job for 22 years and have never heard of anything like this happening before, and really hope it never happens again,” Whittington continued.

For her part, Devane was fitted with a subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator, which shocks her heart if a similar situation happens again.

She ended up marrying Eammon, whom she met in 2014, in an emotional July 2023 ceremony.

Devane had taught him CPR — his bosses had also sent him on a first aid course.

“I felt very lucky to have done the first aid course,” Eammon said.

“[CPR] is a skill everybody should know,” Devane added. “It’s a skill you never want to have to use but if you do, you’re so grateful to have it.”

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