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University student praises ambulance response after cardiac arrest at gig

By Carmarthen Journal  |  Posted: October 10, 2012

  • St John volunteers Andrew King and Mathew Jones, who saved the life of Trinity St David University student James Cory

  • Student James Cory pictured with St John Ambulance volunteers Mathew Jones and Andrew King, who saved his life after he collapsed from a suspected cardiac arrest at Carmarthen’s Trinity University student union

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A STUDENT who collapsed with a suspected heart attack said he owes his life to the St John Ambulance volunteers who rushed to his aid.

James Cory, 20, suddenly collapsed on the dance floor at Trinity St David University student union in Carmarthen in the early hours of Sunday, September 30.

James, who regained consciousness the following Monday, is said to be recovering well but still undergoing tests at Swansea's Morriston Hospital after being moved from Carmarthen's Glangwili Hospital.

He has met the two St John lifesavers, Andrew King, 27, and Mathew Jones, 21, to thank them.

James said: "I don't remember anything at all about what happened.

"I owe my life to Andrew and Mathew. Without St John being able to respond so quickly, I wouldn't be here today.

"I had no idea that I was ill.

"I'm young, I keep fit and I never contemplated that something like this could happen to me.

"These volunteers are amazing and I'll be forever grateful."

On the night of his collapse an ambulance was called and James, who is a second year sports studies student, was carried from the union and taken outside by the security team.

St John Wales First Responders were in Carmarthen town centre when they received the call at 12:48am from ambulance control.

The volunteers were on the scene in less than five minutes.

Andrew, from Courtlands Park in Carmarthen, said: "We arrived to find the door staff and police officer had started basic life support by doing CPR.

"We quickly assessed the situation and found he was in full cardiac arrest and wasn't breathing."

Mathew, who has been a St John member for three years and lives in Lly y Bryn, Cwmffrwd, attached the defibrillator to the student's chest and Andrew shocked him once bringing him back to life.

They maintained James's airway and breathing until the ambulance crew arrived. Andrew then assisted the paramedic on route to Glangwili hospital.

James, originally from Wadebridge in Cornwall, now wants all of his friends to learn first aid skills.

He said: "First aid is such an important skill to have and if what happened to me encourages more people to learn I will be happy."

Welsh Ambulance Service first responder officer Steve Roberts said: "The excellent collaboration between the Welsh Ambulance Service and St John Wales in the form of these first responders was clearly evident at this incident.

"This is what first responders contribute to the daily lives of their communities."

He added: "By arriving on the scene so swiftly, they were able to give this young man a chance that he may well not have had in other cases. We wish him well in his recovery."

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