Gardland praised for medical response
Carbonear native Joey Garland praised for response to emergency
Carbonear native Joey Garland’s quick reaction and professionalism helped prolong the life of an elderly man who suffered a heart attack at a hockey arena in Ontario late last month. Garland reflects on the incident, which saw the man die three days later.
Joey Garland was expressing mixed feelings last week when asked about his response to a serious medical emergency at the Sleeman Centre in Guelph, Ont., last month.
Garland, a native of Carbonear, is the athletic therapist with the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League.
Prior to the start of a game between the visiting Spitfires and the Storm at the arena on Oct. 22, someone ran up to Garland and told him a man had collapsed in the media room.
When Garland and Shane Mabey, the athletic therapist for the Storm, got to the room, 80-year-old media room attendant Carl Costello was lying on the floor. He had suffered a massive heart attack.
Garland quickly started chest compressions, and it was quickly decided that Costello would need a shock from a defibrillator to get his heart started.
Garland raced to the Guelph dressing room to collect the device.
“ We got a shock in in the first couple of minutes and that got ( his heart) started,” Garland told The Windsor Star.
Within minutes, Costello was in the back of an ambulance and on his way to hospital, and Garland and was being praised for his quick reaction.
“It’s no surprise,” Spitfires head coach Bob Jones told The Star. “He just reacts. He’s a pro like I haven’t seen in junior in a long time. He’s just tremendous at his job.”
Unfortunately, Costello never regained consciousness and passed away three days later.
“ On the whole, between myself and the other team’s trainer, we did all we could to manage the situation,” Garland told The Compass last week. “ But there are always the little things you think you could have done better.”
Garland said he was proud to be able to help, and said “it’s a special feeling knowing he left there alive and we had extended his life because of our actions. And the family appreciated being able to see him while he was still alive, even though he was unconscious.”
Gardland said the incident helped put things in perspective, and he realizes now more than ever that there are more important things than hockey.
“I was just trying to help out, but you always want to be ready for anything. That’s why we’re in there and the league does a good job of making sure we’re prepared on and off the ice.”
Joey Garland is the athletic therapist with the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League.