Smyrna’s American Legion Ambulance Service gave a special gift to a Clayton family last week – a gift with the potential to save a life. On December 23, ambulance service members from Station 64 donated a defibrillator to Susan Capel and her 9-year-old son, Kevin.
Smyrna’s American Legion Ambulance Service gave a special gift to a Clayton family last week – a gift with the potential to save a life.
On December 23, ambulance service members from Station 64 donated a defibrillator to Susan Capel and her 9-year-old son, Kevin.
Capel said her son has been diagnosed with a heart condition known as Long QT Syndrome.
By having a defibrillator in her home, Capel will be better prepared if her son experiences heart problems. She also received CPR training and training on how to use the defibrillator.
Capel said she got a prescription to purchase a defibrillator for her son, but she didn’t know where to go in order to actually get the prescription filled.
At one point, Capel decided to call Station 64 about it, because they had previously helped save her sister. Capel and her sister have also both have been diagnosed with long QT syndrome, she said.
“I was thinking they would know since they saved my sister,” she said.
But rather than just pointing Capel in the right direction, the Ambulance Service decided to purchase the defibrillator and donate it to the family.
“I was shocked,” Capel said.
Station 64 Ambulance Service Director Allan Post said he received Capel’s call and realized it would be easier – and less expensive – for the ambulance service to purchase the defibrillator.
The decision to donate the defibrillator came before the board of directors of American Legion Post 14, and they agreed to the idea.
“It was an enthusiastic ‘yes,’” Post said.
Ambulance Service Chairman Jean Forest said the defibrillator donated to the Capel family usually costs $2,300, but the ambulance service was ale to get it for under $1,100.
“With our connections, we were able to get it sooner and at a cheaper cost,” he said.
Capel expressed her gratitude when the Ambulance Service presented the donated defibrillator to her last week.
“You guys are awesome,” she said to Station 64 members gathered at her residence for the event.
SNAP program available for children with special emergency health needs
In addition to the defibrillator, Capel also took another step to keep her son safe by having him enrolled him in the Special Needs Alert Program (SNAP).
Through the SNAP program, families meet with EMS staff so they can be better prepared to help a child with special health care needs in the event of a 911 call.
Enrollment in the SNAP program is free. Participation in the program is voluntary.
To enroll in the program, call the Emergency Medical Services for Children Office at 1-302-744-5415.