From Aching Teeth to Lifesaving Beat: A White House Miracle

From Aching Teeth to Lifesaving Beat: A White House Miracle

WHITE HOUSE, TENNESSEE: (Smokey Barn News) – It’s called a mechanical CPR device; its job, to save lives, and that’s exactly what it did. Jimmy Beach of White House didn’t know it, but back on March 22, aching teeth would put him on a path to encounter this incredible life-saving device.

Mechanical CPR devices have been around since the early 2000s. The device takes over CPR allowing medics to focus on other things like pharmacology and oxygenation. The Robertson County Commission voted to fund the life-saving devices in the 2023-2024 fiscal budget year. As of August 2023, all Robertson County EMS ambulances were equipped with LUCAS-3 chest compression devices.

Jimmy was at home when he began to experience signs and symptoms of a heart attack. Beach said it all started with aching lower teeth. He became concerned and called his friend Patrick McGlaughlin, who is the Fire Chief in the city of White House. Chief McGlaughlin recommended that Jimmy call 911 due to his signs and symptoms. Jimmy was somewhat hesitant to call 911 but he never got the chance because at that moment Jimmy collapsed in sudden cardiac arrest. Beach’s daughter would be the one tocall 911, while his wife performed CPR. Robertson County EMS Medic and the White House Fire Dept. were immediately dispatched to Jimmy’s home.

When Chief McGlaughlin saw the call alert come across his work phone, he realized the address was Beach’s home and called Jimmy’s phone to let him know help was on the way. Jimmy’s daughter answered in a panic and Chief McGlaughlin could hear Jimmy’s wife performing CPR in the background. Chief McGlaughlin joined the response to assist in resuscitating his friend. Within minutes, units arrived at the home of Jimmy Beach and began administering ACLS “Advanced Cardiac Life Support,” including CPR, electrical shocks with the same type of defibrillator used in hospitals, several emergency medications, and intubation as performed when people are placed on ventilators. A situation like this can quickly make someone’s home look more like an emergency room in a hospital. “Out of hospital” cardiac arrest, or in other words, going into cardiac arrest at home or work, has a very low rate of survival. In fact, according to the American Heart Association’s research, while up to 30% of all cases of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest achieve a return of pulse, only 10% of patients survive. To have survived and be back at home doing better than before is truly a miracle for Jimmy Beach and his family.

The ambulance on duty that day was staffed with 2 paramedics who were recently equipped and trained with the Stryker LUCAS-3 mechanical CPR device. These devices can provide near-perfect CPR for extended periods and make chest compressions better for patients and transport much safer for EMS professionals. Based on our research, mechanical CPR devices are so effective some patients can even regain consciousness while the device is in use. In such cases, patients are generally sedated, but it highlights the device’s remarkable efficiency and rhythmic consistency.

Mr. Beach is one of approximately 50 people who have benefitted from the new equipment since the devices were placed in service. Jimmy received a total of 3 shocks (defibrillations) by responders while on the scene. Mr. Beach was quickly transported to Skyline Medical Center as efforts continued to save his life. At Skyline Medical Center, Mr. Beach was stabilized and then transferred further on to Centennial Medical Center in Nashville for specialized care in a Cardiac Intensive Care Unit.

Days later, Mr. Beach awakened with his wife at his side. There is no doubt that having a spouse who was trained in CPR was a big part of Jimmy’s miraculous recovery. Among the many heroes in Jimmy’s story of survival, his own wife who performed bystander CPR, is certainly one of the most important.

Because of his story, Jimmy Beach has become an advocate for encouraging others to “don’t wait till it’s too late…” “Call for EMS when needed.” Mr. Beach plans to rejoin his good friend, Chief Patrick McGlaughlin of White House FD, again this Friday for lunch. Another interesting point in this story, is that one of the White House FD firefighters who responded to Mr. Beach is Ronnie Vradenburg, who graduated High School with Mr. Beach. (Photo included of Ronnie and Jimmy). Firefighter Ronnie Vradenburg has been with WHFD for 22 years and shared how it felt to get on the scene and recognize the family of an old friend he had known for many years. To see these two gentlemen greet each other on much happier conditions was quite a blessing to witness. “You look much better than the last time I saw you…” said Ronnie to Jimmy. They both shared how much the greater White House, TN had grown over the years. They reminisced about the single traffic light that used to exist in the city limits. That same traffic light now stays on display in the lobby of the White House Fire Department on Business Park Drive. The old light serves as a reminder of times past, but no matter how many years go by, the neighborly spirit of our community remains… as do these good friendships thanks to some incredible teamwork.

“Don’t be stupid and not call 911 when you don’t feel good.” Jimmy Beach 2024

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