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Pair of men avoid disaster at Bellevue fitness club | AEDs save lives on consecutive days at 24 Hour Fitness
Some facilities go months, even years, without ever using an automatic external defibrillator.
At the 24 Hour Fitness Sport in Bellevue, the device recently got more than its fair share of use.
On two consecutive days, individuals exercising at the gym on 140th Ave. NE collapsed because of heart attacks and both times, the AED was their saving grace.
"The team did an excellent job of executing our plan," club manager John Dozier said.
The first heart attack victim was Dave Mann, a 71-year-old who said he has been coming to the location for 40 years. Mann was playing racquetball when he collapsed on the court on Halloween day and needed to be revived by club staff, which provided CPR and shocked his heart with the AED. The following day, Steve Woody, a retired general manager at Bellevue Jaguar Land Rover, was in a Zumba fitness class when he suffered the same fate and luckily, the same treatment.
Along with quick reacting club staff and the help of a cardiothoracic surgeon who happened to be working out at the time, CPR and three firings of an AED finally brought Woody back.
"I didn't think he was coming back," Dozier said.
Bellevue Fire and Rescue responded on both occasions and provided assistance and those first responders were back on hand at the club Wednesday to meet Mann and Woody for the first time.
"If it wasn't for these people," Woody said, "this wouldn't be a very happy meeting."
Dozier said he has received congratulations from throughout the corporation and Troy Donlin of the Bellevue Fire Department said ABC News has contacted him about bringing some national attention to the story.
While the conditions that preceded his staff's heroics is never preferred, Dozier said he now has an even higher level of confidence in his staff to react in emergency situations.
"I couldn't be happier with my team and the job they did," he said.
Dozier, Mann and Woody look on as an official from King County Public Health delivers certificates of achievement to 24 Hour Fitness employees who helped save the two men. JOSH SUMAN, BELLEVUE REPORTER
Mann said he was unsure of the reason behind the meeting, but was happy to meet Anderson. JOSH SUMAN, BELLEVUE REPORTER
The Bellevue Fire Department presented Anderson, who pressed the button on the AED that revived Mann, is presented with a mug from that the department gives to those who execute a life-saving AED. JOSH SUMAN, BELLEVUE REPORTER