Why I VolunteerTestimonial

Richard MacCready shares how his Sterling Rescue skills came in handy during wine and dinner event

You never know when the skills you learn as an EMT will come in handy. Sterling Rescue’s own Richard MacCready, 59, learned that lesson over a decade ago while at a wine and dinner event.

While dining with a table of 10 mostly friends and family, MacCready, an over 20 year veteran at Sterling, heard the sound of something drop accidentally. Rather than turn around to see what happened, MacCready said his friend’s tone of voice was all it took to know someone was in trouble.

“Rich you need to go over there,” he said. “I thought he was teasing and said ‘Yeah right.’ And my friend said, ‘No you need to go over there.’”

A guest at the restaurant had collapsed into a seizure. MacCready turned around and locked eyes with one of the wait staff who happened to be an ER nurse from the University of Virginia. Together they put the guest into recovery position to stabilize him. Unfortunately the guest had bitten down on his tongue, was bleeding in his mouth and not swallowing, causing himself to choke.

While 911 was on its way, MacCready could see the man was in trouble and remembered thinking, “we’re going to lose this guy.”

Knowing that the man needed air flow, MacCready’s training kicked in and he was able to secure an open airway so the man could breathe.

The man slowly began to come to and medics arrived shortly after to take him to the hospital.

Ironically enough the medic on the responding ambulance was a former member of SVRS. MacCready’s “other half” later quipped they can’t go anywhere in Virginia without him knowing someone due to his EMS career.

Additionally, the husband of the wait staff nurse who worked with MacCready, was the ER doctor on duty that night at the University of Virginia Medical Center. She called her husband and received authorization to directly transport the patient there.

Sterling volunteers are trained, prepared and confident to act in demanding situations 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You never know when your skills will come in handy.

Join us in bringing compassion, dedication and excellence to every call, every day.