Paramedics save man whose heart stopped mid-flight

Donovan George and Alex Van were travelling with their service dogs to a search-and-rescue conference

Updated: 


Two paramedics have been hailed heroes after they saved a passenger whose heart stopped during a flight from California to Houston.

Donovan George and Alex Van were travelling to Houston with their service dogs to a search-and-rescue conference held by the Federal Emergency Management Agency when a 70-year-old passenger collapsed.

The man stood up and complained of feeling light-headed and dizzy before collapsing.

"He was really pale in colour and he was sweating profusely," Van told ABC News. "I started noticing that he's not breathing, he does not have a pulse. I immediately started CPR."

Van and George hooked the man up to an IV and auto-external defibrillator provided by the flight crew and the plane was diverted to Phoenix, where the passenger was taken to hospital.

Orange County Register reports that when the paramedics arrived in Houston, they received a round of applause from their fellow passengers.

"It doesn't matter if you're 30,000 feet up in the air or on the side of a freeway or in someone's home, our skill set allows us to help people in need when they need it," said George.

"This is not a career. It's a way of life," said Van. "Wherever you go, you will have to respond."

15 flights from hell

15 flights from hell


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