For the third straight year, Frank Ueberschar crossed the finish line at the Times Colonist 10K run in Victoria.
This year though, it happened in a gurney.
“Everyone’s having a great day, running through the finish line, and here I am being brought back to life,” he says.
Ueberschar, a member of Ladysmith’s Search and Rescue team, was finishing up the annual run with his friends last week when his heart suddenly stopped.
“I’m wobbly and getting dizzy, and thinking oh no, don’t get dizzy. Everyone’s so encouraging, and I said ‘yeah, I’m making it’,” he said.
“I pushed it a little bit, and they’re saying ‘you’re gonna make it.’ My whole face went numb, and I said ‘no I’m not.'”
The next thing Ueberschar knew, he was looking at the sky. After collapsing, the medical team rushed into action, reviving Ueberschar and getting him to a nearby hospital immediately.
“The only place that I might have been in better hands was if I had a heart attack in the ER,” he said.
“I knew I was going to be okay…I’ve been trained to do it, I’m supposed to be one of the guys doing it, and now it’s being done to me. I knew I had the best chance I was going to get.”
His collapse, which he says was “basically a heart attack,” happened because of an irregular heart rhythm caused by scar tissue some time ago.
Ueberschar has survived cancer, is grateful he’s survived this event – and is looking forward to next year’s run.
“I’m just so grateful,” he says.
“Even though I kind of dumped, I don’t have scratches on my elbows, or face, or anything. I don’t understand how. I think I landed on some angels.”