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October 19, 2009

Fla. deputy revives pastor who collapsed while jogging

By Ryan Mills
The Naples Daily News

NAPLES, Fla. — No one will be able to accuse 48-year-old Gregory Glenn Ball of not practicing what he preaches.

That is, at least, if Ball, the pastor at Destiny Church Naples, is preaching about miracles.

Ball's family members consider his very life to be a miracle, thanks to a quick-thinking Collier County sheriff's deputy who jumped into action and revived Ball after he collapsed on the side of the road near his home.

"Anybody that could be unconscious for 10 minutes without oxygen to the brain, without a heartbeat, and then rise up and be in his right mind and healthy three days later, I think that's just a miracle," said Jordan Ball, 19, Gregory's son.

On Tuesday morning, Gregory Ball and his wife, Bobbie Ball, were jogging in their Valencia Lake neighborhood when Gregory collapsed on the side of the road.

Bobbie Ball knocked on the door of several neighbors looking for help, but no one was home. That's when she saw the patrol car of off-duty Cpl. Jim Streeter parked in his driveway, and ran to his home.

"I had her call 911, jumped in my car, which was parked across the street, I have an (automated external defibrillator) with me that's in my car, just drove down the road trying to find him," Streeter said. "He was laying by the side of the road in the grass."

Streeter, who attends Gregory Ball's church, hooked Ball to the AED and gave him a shock. After Streeter administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation - CPR - Ball began breathing on his own. Paramedics then arrived and transported Ball to the hospital.

Jordan Ball said Friday his father was doing well at NCH Downtown Naples Hospital, is off the ventilator, recognizes his family, but has no recollection of the incident. Jordan Ball described his father as athletic and healthy.

Streeter saved his father's life, Jordan Ball believes.

"Words can't express how thankful I am," he said.

All Collier deputies have AEDs in their cars because of a partnership with the American Heart Association. Streeter said Ball is the second person he's saved using the device.

"It's a little different when you actually know the person involved," Streeter said. "I'm very, very happy that I was there."

Destiny Church Naples is a non-denominational church that holds services at Gulf Coast High School. Despite his father's hospitalization, Jordan Ball said he expects services to be held as normal this weekend.

"It's probably going to be a big party," Jordan Ball said. "We'll see when we get there. I'm not counting him out not being there yet. That's one thing I've learned, not to ever count him out.

Copyright 2009 Collier County Publishing Company

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