Helping his ‘Paw-Paw,’ CPR teacher saves life

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 6, 2005


Managing Editor

HAHNVILLE – Blake Zammit never imagined his American Red Cross CPR training would come in handy, hitting so close to home.

The 21-year-old was staying at his grandparents’ home in Hahnville recently when his grandmother awakened him at 10 a.m., telling him to “go work on your Paw-Paw,” as she called 911.

He dashed into the living room and found W.F. George, 69, not breathing – the apparent victim of a heart attack.

Zammit, trained since he was a small child in emergency first aid and cardio-pulmonary resusitation, pulled the coffee table away and placed his grandfather on the floor. He checked and found no pulse.

He administered three or four CPR cycles and his grandfather began breathing.

A deputy responded to the 911 call and assisted Zammit in keeping George stable until the EMTs arrived from St. Charles Parish Hospital, by which time he was not only breathing steady but awake.

George was transported to the hospital, where he remained in intensive care for three days and soon released.

Hospital physicians found no blockages and also found no damage to his heart, due to the prompt and skilled aid given him by his grandson.

“It was like an instinct,” Zammit said.

Just a month prior, he had completed training to become a CPR instructor.

“Now, teaching the classes will be more meaningful,” Zammit said.