News: CRG TWO Sailors Render Medical Aid; Receive Award
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - A routine drive on Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story turned into a race to save the life of a fellow service member May 8.
Hull Maintenance Technician 1st Class Christopher Wilson, Coastal Riverine Group TWO (CRG TWO) Training Evaluation Unit, was driving his motorcycle when he noticed a group of people standing around a service member on the ground.
“There were a lot of people looking at this person lying on the ground,” said Wilson. “I looked down and that’s when I noticed that he was blue. That’s when I pulled over and started using what the military has taught me.”
Wilson began to take control of the scene when a fellow CRG TWO Training Evaluation Unit Sailor, Electronics Technician 2nd Class Justin Thomas, pulled over to help. They were able to flag down a radio truck and contact emergency rescue.
“When I showed up, Wilson had already started CPR [cardiopulmonary resuscitation],” said Thomas. “He looked at me and told me to go to the office and grab an automated external defibrillator (AED) and one of the hospital corpsmen (HM).”
Wilson continued with CPR until Thomas returned with Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Adam Smith.
“When Thomas came and got me I didn’t really believe him that something was going on,” said Smith. “When we finally got to the spot, I realized it was a real situation.”
Smith opened up the AED while Wilson and Thomas continued to administer CPR.
Once Smith was able to get the AED started, he applied the paddles to the man’s chest and was able to send a pulse to his heart.
The three Sailors alternated giving chest compressions until medics arrived on scene.
Medics were able to stabilize the patient and get the service member into the ambulance.
“We just had our requalification for CPR, so most of this scenario was fresh in our heads and Smith was actually the one who trained us,” said Wilson.
Cmdr. Raul Gandara, officer in charge CRG TWO Training Evaluation Unit says the training these Sailors received played an important role in their actions.
“These three sailors recognized a fellow Sailor in need, a shipmate that had collapsed and because of their training they knew exactly what to do,” said Gandara. “It took the leadership and the initiative to get it done in a fast effective manner. They did an absolutely superb job.”
The three Sailors were awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medal by Capt. Erich Diehl, commodore Coastal Riverine Group TWO, May 9.