AED Helps Save New York High School Player
Several heroes played a role Wednesday in saving the life of
Jamesville-DeWitt (N.Y.) sophomore lacrosse player Dan Cochran.
Cochran was at Fayetteville-Manlius trying out for an all-star team
when a shot hit him in the chest. He collapsed to the ground, and
his heart stopped beating, apparently suffering a case of commotio
Commotio cords is a rare, but sometimes fatal incident that
happens when a blunt, but often relatively mild, blow (normally
from a moving object) occurs to the chest directly over the heart
during a precise moment of the heart’s normal rhythm cycle,
and induces sudden cardiac arrest in the victim.
Cochran was revived by an automated external defibrillator (AED)
and appears headed to a full recovery.
There's a great story in the Syracuse
Post-Standard that highlights many of the heroes: Rome
Free Academy lacrosse coaches Guy Calandra and Jeremy Roberts, who
began performing CPR on Cochran; a mother of a another player,
Daniela Reilly, a registered nurse that helped with the CPR; Cyndi
Kelder, Fayetteville-Manlius' trainer, who used the AED that
restarted Cochran's heart.
Tom Hall, the former Fayetteville-Manlius coach and the organizer
of the Upstate Risings event for which Cochran was trying out, also
deserves credit. Making the decision, and investment, to have a
certified athletic trainer on site reduced the time before Cochran
had the AED applied, which greatly improved his chance of
To Brown coach Lars Tiffany, who attended the event, the actions
of Roberts were inspiring.
"To me the hero of the day, was the Rome Free Academy coach,
Jeremy Roberts," Tiffany said. "He was absolutely in charge.
Barking out orders. I've never seen such a situation. I was really
In addition to starting the CPR, Roberts had called for the
"I bet within 90 seconds she was there," Tiffany said. "I saw her
face. I looked at her go from normal concern to ‘oh my
god’. She was wonderful. I don’t remember [the AED]
being put on, it was so quick.
"You could hear this laboring breath – this kid's trying to
live, trying to breathe. The AED starts giving out orders, 'shock
advise'. That was my first time. To see the body jump, like
I’ve only seen in movies, this was real.
"What a sense of relief, the second time when the AED said, 'clear
the body, shock not advised.' You're thinking, 'We’re moving
in the right direction.' Jeremy was in the boy’s face, 'You
keep breathing; you keep looking at me.'
"All of us coaches get training, but now that I’ve seen it,
I might be ready to do it. I feel like I’ve got an incredible
role model. I’ve seen him do it for real. I was absolutely
The Importance of AEDs
The most effective treatment for sudden cardiac arrest and,
indeed, the only effective response to commotio cordis, is the
timely delivery of a life-saving shock or defibrillation.
Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are portable and
easy-to-use devices that deliver potentially life-saving
defibrillation therapy quickly and effectively. Tens of thousands
of lives that would have otherwise been lost have been saved by
US Lacrosse has had a strategic alliance with Cardiac Science
for several years to help make AEDs more affordable to youth
lacrosse programs and to raise awareness of commotio cordis. Last
year, US Lacrosse awarded AED grants to 14 youth lacrosse programs
and the organization is currently accepting applications through
July 1 for its next AED grant cycle. Application information can be
found here: http://www.uslacrosse.org/TopNav2Right/ProgramsGrants/AEDGrantProgram.aspx