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January 21, 2015

EMTs save half marathoner collapsed at finish line

By Jessica Lipscomb
Naples Daily News

NAPLES, Fla. - Toward the end of the Naples Daily News Half Marathon, Greg Wolpert felt his body slowing down. As he ran closer toward the finish line, he started to collapse.

“I was out before I actually hit the pavement,” Wolpert said. “The next thing I remember was the EMS guys loading me up in their truck.”

Wolpert, 59, went into cardiac arrest Sunday while finishing the race in downtown Naples. Bystanders started CPR until first responders from the Naples Fire Department were able to step in.

Chief Steve McInerny said Wolpert had no pulse and wasn’t breathing when crews arrived. But after using an ALS defibrillator, they were able to get Wolpert conscious and breathing by the time they arrived at the ER.

Wolpert was taken to NCH Downtown Naples Hospital and released Tuesday night. He said EMS crews came by the intensive care unit on Monday to see him.

“They took great care of me, and then I came to the hospital, and they took great care of me also,” Wolpert said. “I was in good hands all the way.”

Wolpert said he heard about bystanders performing CPR and wanted to say thank you.

“Lots of people helped out, and I’m appreciative to all of them,” he said.

His doctors expect a full recovery, and Wolpert said he hopes to be back on the road in a few months.

“Just have to be cleared by my cardiologist,” he said. “I’m doing great, all things considered.”


McClatchy-Tribune News Service
©2015 the Naples Daily News (Naples, Fla.)