" Think About it..."
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True Police Stories
"Courage is the ability to move;
when all around you are frozen in fear
My Name is Chris Hoerchler
It was a very bright spring morning in early June. Minutes after completing our morning squad briefing, loading my patrol car and putting myself into service, a single "hot-tone" blared over my radio. The call that immediately followed was a CPR request for a male not breathing. The address that followed was actually in another district, but it was less than one-half mile from my location. I immediately responded over my radio channel that I would be responding and switching to the other district's radio channel. While driving code-3 to the address, I wondered what I would find. Would it be another CPR call where the person was obviously already deceased and CPR would do no good? Would it be one of the "happy" CPR calls where the person is breathing on their own and alive when we arrived? Would it be just as the dispatcher said? I was not sure but I was sure that I would be the first to arrive. I was sure I was closer than the other unit responding and I knew my response time of 30 seconds or less would be far quicker than the paramedics.
I quickly asked Heavenly Father for help as I arrived,
When I arrived at the door of the home the mother
She grabbed both my arms and screamed for me to please help. She led me into the living room where I found her son lying on his back near the sofa. His eyes were slightly open, but he was unresponsive, not breathing and had no pulse. His face, neck and extremities were already blue. His lips were a very deep blue color, giving me the impression he might have been down longer than the minute or so the 911 caller gave.
While I was positioning the young man's head and placing my CPR mask on his face, I heard Officer Jamie Castaneda, #10318, broadcast over the radio that he had arrived. As I was attempting to administer the first rescue breath, Officer Castaneda joined me on the floor next to the young man positioning himself to administer chest compressions. I could not get either of the first two rescue breaths to go into the young man's lungs. Something was blocking the airway but I could not see the blockage. I remember distinctly saying in my mind, "Please Father help me help this boy." Officer Castaneda administered chest compressions while I was attempting to locate the blockage and repositioning the head. I never did see what was blocking the airway but once I repositioned his head I attempted once again to administer rescue breaths. This time there was no blockage and the breaths filled his lungs raising his chest as they entered his lungs.
Officer Castaneda and I continued CPR for a couple of minutes before Officer Castaneda checked for a pulse. The boy now had a pulse but was still not breathing on his own. Officer Castaneda stopped administering chest compressions once he had found a pulse. I continued rescue breathing.
After what seemed like a very
long time to me the fire department arrived.
Once they had their equipment set up the paramedics took over the CPR efforts. When I got to my feet I could see that the boy was losing the blue color he had and was beginning to regain normal healthy coloring. Officer Castaneda and I watched the paramedics in silence for a minute or two. We heard the paramedic say that the boy was beginning to breathe on his own. We shook hands and with looks of relief, told each other, "Good job." Officer Castaneda then began gathering information from the mother for his report.
I then stood back and took a moment
I was completely humbled that I could be used as a tool by Heavenly Father. I knew that I had been trained how to react to and handle a situation like this one. I often thought about this type of situation and played it out in my mind to a successful conclusion. Now that it had occurred, I knew that this boy being resuscitated was solely the work of Heavenly Father and I was humbled to have been used by Him to provide a service to this boy and his family. I thanked Heavenly Father again for His help and guidance in this situation, I asked Officer Castaneda if he needed anything further from me. He did not and I left the scene.
Officer Castaneda later contacted me to tell me that the boy was fine and that he had spoken to him at the hospital. It turned out that he had been choking on a piece of licorice that he had been eating.
Officer Castaneda and I were later honored by the department with life saving medals and by the Mesa Public Safety Foundation with plaques of recognition. I graciously, respectfully and humbly accepted these awards, for I knew that all of the recognition, gratitude, glory and honor that was being bestowed on us, rightfully belongs to Heavenly Father.
I am a convert and relatively new member
My life has taken such a dramatic change for the good since I was baptized. I have a whole new perspective on the joys of life as well as the trials. I continue to learn on a daily basis. I have a new found strength and desire to do my job to the best of my ability. I am humbled by the love our Heavenly Father shows us. I am humbled by the fact that He not only listens to; but answers our prayers. I am humbled to be of service to the citizens of Mesa, AZ and I am humbled to be used as a tool for good by our Heavenly Father.
I have a testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
I know that Jesus Christ gave His life for us and was resurrected on the third day to atone for all of our sins. He is the Savior of man and He lives today. I have a testimony of the love that Heavenly Father has for every one of us, that He not only listens to, but answers our prayers. I have a testimony of the gift of the Holy Ghost and its power to guide us at all times and be our constant companion, if we will live righteously and be obedient.
I have a testimony of the truthfulness
I know and testify that Heavenly Father's Church and the Gospel of Jesus Christ have been restored to us, through the Prophet Joseph Smith, in these the latter-days. I believe that Joseph Smith saw both Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ in a vision when he was a boy.
I believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God, as is the Bible.
I have a testimony that this church is led by Jesus Christ through a prophet, Gordon B. Hinckley, whom I sustain. Currently, I've been called to serve as a teacher to the 16 year olds and as 1st councilor in our Elders Quorum Presidency. I share these things in the precious and sacred name of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Officer Chris Hoerchler, #11254, Mesa PD
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