By Rachel Stengel
Two students were in the right place at the right time on Monday in Cranberry’s as they used their emergency medical technician (EMT) training to assist a Rider employee who had a seizure.
Russell Cahn and Alexandra Lipari, two EMTs who were in Cranberry’s at approximately 12:30 p.m., rushed to aid the employee.
Cahn said that he was in line when he heard someone scream for help. Lipari said that she was leaving as she heard the commotion. Despite the fact that they did not know each other, Cahn and Lipari worked as a team to help the employee.
Cahn held the woman’s head so that she did not injure herself and Lipari asked the crowd to clear the area. Another unknown student in Cranberry’s called 911 and handed the phone to Cahn, who informed the operator of the situation.
Cahn and Lipari both said that helping others comes naturally.
“I chose to help the employee because it is what I love to do and I am trained to do it,” Cahn said. “I became an EMT to help people. It is in my blood and I feel it is my duty to help.”
Lipari said that helping others is a passion of hers.
“It’s what I’m meant to do. I’m always happy to help people. I became an EMT because that’s all I wanted to do: to help people, especially in times like these when people need medical assistance.”
Public Safety was dispatched to Cranberry’s for a medical emergency and controlled the crowd while the ambulance was in transit, according to Head of Public Safety Vicki Weaver. The ambulance transported the woman to a local hospital for further treatment, Weaver said.
Lipari has been an EMT for six years and this winter break will mark Cahn’s second year as an EMT. Weaver said that Public Safety was thankful for the EMTs’ response.
“Public Safety is very appreciative of the services that the two off-duty EMT personnel provided in the medical emergency,” Weaver said.
Dean of Students Anthony Campbell was equally pleased with the students’ action.
“Russell and Alexandra were wonderful,” Campbell said. “They both immediately stopped to assist the person in crisis. Both acted very professionally and used their skills to both attend to the individual in need and provide vital information to the emergency personnel in transit. I am very pleased that Russell and Alexandra were in the area and grateful to them for choosing to use their expertise to help a member of the Rider community during their time of need.”