Delta man survives second heart attack playing hockey on Richmond ice rink in 10 months
WATCH: A Delta man says he is living proof that AED’s save lives. Jill Bennett has more on what you need to know about the defibrillators.
When David Schmid fell to the ice during a recreational hockey game at the Richmond Ice Centre this week, his first thought was “aw, not again.”
“[I] turned and headed back to the bench to call it a night, and my vision went fuzzy and grey,” the 60-year-old said.
It was Schmid’s second heart attack on the ice in 10 months. The first time, in November, paramedics happened to be in the crowd and helped shock him back to life.
This time, a man watching his daughter play ringette in an adjacent rink came to the rescue.
“A woman came running into the lobby area and said, ‘we need a defibrillator!’ Since I took my course a few months ago, I knew where it was in the building,” said Rod Needham.
Needham found the automated external defibrillator (AED), and used his training both as an army medic and as a teacher in Surrey to organize those who were trying to help.
“He absolutely was lifeless,” said Needham. “His eyes were wide open and he was not breathing, he had no pulse. He was gone.”
Thankfully, the AED worked.
“His eyes started coming back, he started moaning, and at a certain point I realized I need to stop compressions. He started complaining,” said Needham with a laugh.
Having those trained in first aid nearby was crucial in saving Schmid’s life, but so was the quick access to the AED.
“The sooner you put the AED on, the more chance of a patient’s survival,” said Needham.
Not wanting to test his luck a third time, Schmid retired from hockey at the urging of his teammates and wife.
“Words can never convey what those people have done for you,” said Jacqueline Schmid.
“They do it without thinking, they step into the spot, and take over and it was a huge thank you from our entire family.”