“My heart stopped. I died.”
Thanks to quick action from Crouse RN Cheryl Youker, Gina George, a homecare nurse from Utica, is very much alive today after suffering a heart attack last week across the street from the Crouse parking garage.
Gina, who was taking a break outside while her 18-year-old son was having surgery, suddenly passed out on the sidewalk. She fell face down, suffering a serious head injury.
Just at the point Cheryl was walking to her car, after finishing her shift on 6 Memorial. “I turned her over and saw that she was blue. She had no pulse,” recounts Cheryl, who immediately started CPR. An ambulance then arrived and brought Gina to the Crouse ER. From there she was whisked into the cardiac cath suite for a stent placement. Today, Gina’s doing well and is looking forward to getting back home with her family. “My whole perspective has changed,” says Gina. “My heart stopped twice, but nobody gave up on me.”
Yesterday, Cheryl received a bouquet of roses from Gina’s family in thanks for her role in responding to this life or death situation. The card was addressed “To Our Angel.”
“It was actually a great team effort, which included Brandon Pylinski from security and Cindy Durham, NP, and others whose names I do not know,” says Cheryl. “I'm thankful we were in close proximity to the hospital and the patient could get the medical treatment she needed. The EMS, fire department and hospital staff that responded were all excellent. Everyone did a great job and now we can just pray for a full recovery for Gina.”