Danielle Gillespie was ready for a fun night watching the Las Vegas Aviators when her emergency nursing career intersected with a night at the ballpark.
“My boyfriend [a City of Henderson firefighter] and I arrived early since he was going to march in the honor guard during the national anthem,” explained Danielle. “I saw a man fall to the ground, and my boyfriend and another firefighter checked for a pulse. He didn’t have one, so they began CPR while I found an automated external defibrillator (AED).”
The AED helped shock the man’s pulses back to life, and on-scene first responders whisked him away to a local hospital, where he survived.
Danielle, who has been an ER nurse with Henderson Hospital since July 2018 after graduating from Nevada State College two months earlier, was thankful for her training and instincts. “This was my first experience saving someone’s life outside of work. I have seen medical emergencies before I was a nurse, and remember feeling a sense of panic. This time was different; I felt calm and collected as we each played a role in helping save this man’s life.”
During the remainder of the game, Danielle and her friends kept wondering how the man was doing. “We just couldn’t believe what had happened, and hoped for the best.”
Danielle and the others will be recognized at the City of Henderson Council meeting on August 21 for their life-saving efforts.
But Danielle recognizes the man’s survival was truly a team effort. “I want to thank all the employees at the [Las Vegas] Ballpark and everyone else involved for helping us run everything so smoothly and calmly. I’m glad we were able to make a positive impact in someone’s life.”