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July 22, 2010

Tenn. firefighter-medic fends off pit bulls with spine board

By EMS1 Staff

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A firefighter-medic injured responding to a pit bull attack used a spine board in an attempt to fend off the animals.

Lt. Ray Pelletier and his partner were trying to save a man who was being attacked by two pit bulls when they themselves became targets, according to WREG.

"It was something I'll never forget," he said.

"Everybody on the scene is yelling and screaming and at that point in time my back was kind of to the apartments.

"I turn around and I see two dogs running toward us."

Despite the efforts to fend off the animals with their EMS equipment, the dogs managed to bite and bruise the responders, sending them back to their ambulance in retreat until police arrived.

The 71-year-old man, Willie Parker, was already in cardiac arrest when the firefighters arrived and died as a result of the incident.

The two responders were hospitalized as a result of their injuries and have since been released.