TAMPA (WFLA) – Imagine having to keep your own father alive until help arrived.
That happened to 15-year-old Kaitlin Ryan in April 2020. She and her father Steve had just gone to the golf course to work on her chipping and putting. Something they often do, especially during the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic.
As Kaitlin was lining up a shot, she noticed her father face down on the green. She had no idea what happened.
“Once I realized something was wrong, I called my mom, and then I was checking for a pulse to see if he had a pulse and I called 911 and started CPR,” Kaitlin said.
Her father was in sudden cardiac arrest thankfully Kaitlin’s quick actions saved her fathers life.
According to the American Heart Association, immediate CPR can double or triple the chance of survival following sudden cardiac arrest.
“I had occasional heart arrhythmias but never would I have thought that something like this would transpire,” Steve said.
Steve who is just 49-year-old spent three days in a medically induced coma and nine days in the hospital.
“When they woke me up on the third day, which was Kaitlin’s birthday, the nurse said do you know why you’re here? I said I don’t have a clue. She said you had sudden cardiac arrest on a golf course. Your daughter is a true hero,” Steve said.
Thankfully Steve has no lasting effects from that episode on the golf course.
“Her reacting so quickly and supplying him with that circulation he really needed, she not only saved his life but the quality of his life,” Sharon Ryan, Kaitlin’s mother says
Now, the Ryan family recommends everyone learn hands-on CPR because you never know when you might need to save a life.