Lantana man who was saved from heart attack pays it forward

Dave and Patti Eaton donated a new AED to Denton County ESD No. 1.

Dave Eaton doesn’t remember what he and his wife Patti refer to as “the incident.”

“Probably four or five days later, I’m in rehab and Patti says, ‘Do you know why you’re here?'” Dave recalled. “I said, ‘No, not really,’ and she said, ‘You had a heart attack.'”

Dave Eaton regularly jogs four miles almost every day, and around 5 p.m. the day after Christmas, he was about one mile into his run on Lantana Trail when he collapsed. A driver saw him lying unconscious near the road and stopped to check on him, called 911 and began administering CPR.

A Bartonville police officer heard the emergency call and responded immediately, arriving before the paramedics. The officer used an automated external defibrillator (AED) and continued to administer CPR. Paramedics soon arrived, shocked him again and got his pulse back before transporting him to the hospital.

Dave said that he and his doctors call it a miracle that he’s still alive.

“I think God had me in his hands this whole time,” he said. “It was an amazing series of events that seem to all be in the right place to keep me going. I had a lot of people praying for me.”

Dave said he spent about four days in the hospital and five days in rehab before he returned home. After a couple weeks, he started running again, cautiously, and hasn’t had any problems since.

Dave and Patti Eaton thanked everyone who helped to save Dave’s life, but they felt like it wasn’t enough.

He learned that the officer from Bartonville responded to his jurisdiction because he had an AED and not all first responders in Bartonville have them. So last week, the Eaton’s donated a new AED to Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 (formerly known as Argyle Fire District, the paramedics who helped save his life).

“A thank you for saving your life, you want to do more, and this would be a great way to pay it forward to help someone else who many be in the same situation that I was in,” Dave Eaton said.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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