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Cardiac arrest survivor reunited with lifesavers

A FATHER-of-two who had a cardiac arrest while on holiday in North Wales has been reunited with his lifesavers.

Dominic Miller, 49, of Hale, Cheshire, was enjoying a family break at Warren Holiday Park in Abersoch in June of last year when he collapsed in the park’s leisure centre.

Quick-thinking staff dialled 999 and began CPR before a volunteer Community First Responder arrived and delivered shocks to Mr Miller with a defibrillator.

Paramedics from the Welsh Ambulance Service stabilised him and took him to hospital, where he later underwent life-saving heart surgery.

Mr Miller, a company director at a healthcare communications company, recalls: “If the leisure centre employees hadn’t been trained to do CPR and learned how to recognise a cardiac arrest, I probably wouldn’t be here today.

“Together with the incredible skills of the Community First Responder, they somehow managed to bring me back, and I can’t thank them enough for what they did.

“Of course you hear about cardiac arrests on the news, but you never think that it can happen to you.”

Phillip Wood was the Community First Responder first on scene, and said: “I received the text from the control room at 11.12am, stating that a male had collapsed at Warren reception with CPR ongoing.

“I had another trainee volunteer with me and we arrived on scene to find two members of the public giving chest compressions.

“We managed to shock Mr Miller four times with our defibrillator and finally brought him back.

“The fact that the staff were so swift in performing CPR on Mr Miller undoubtedly had a crucial impact in his chances of survival and complete recovery.”

This month, Mr Miller and his wife Katherine were reunited with his lifesavers, and presented a publicly-accessible defibrillator to Warren Holiday Park.

Tomos Hughes, Public Access Defibrillator Officer at the Welsh Ambulance Service, who facilitated the meeting, said: “The guys here were amazing, I was very impressed when I heard the story.

“Because cardiac arrests can happen at any time and any place, and often without warning, the chances of being near CPR-trained people and a defibrillators are often slim.

“But when communities such as this one set life-saving skills as a priority and install defibrillators in public places, a cardiac arrest can have a happy ending.

“I would urge all communities to take this matter seriously.”

Mr Miller added: “CPR training only takes an hour. If by doing this, you could save the life of one of your loved one, would you do it?

“Communities need to be prepared.”

Mr Miller, who is dad to a 12 and a 15 year-old, is now back at work and enjoying sport again.