A LIFE SAVER

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - FRONT PAGE - SHAUN McMANUS

HAYES res­i­dent Mee­gan Geard ex­ceeded all ex­pec­ta­tions — in­clud­ing her own — when she went to the aid of an um­pire who suf­fered a heart at­tack at a ju­nior foot­ball game last month.

Ms Geard’s daugh­ter plays for the New Nor­folk Un­der 17 girls’ foot­ball team, and at quar­ter time of the side’s semi­fi­nal at Pontville Oval an um­pire went down in the mid­dle.

“I ac­tu­ally thought I prob­a­bly would have had an anx­i­ety at­tack or some­thing if I was put in a sit­u­a­tion like that,” Ms Geard said.

“Adren­a­line kicked in, and we just did what we needed to do, and it all worked out re­ally well in the end.”

Ms Geard has post- trau­matic stress dis­or­der af­ter a work­place ac­ci­dent last year and has strug­gled to be around large groups, but she leapt straight into ac­tion in the cri­sis.

She has been nom­i­nated for a 2018 Pride of Aus­tralia Medal for her ac­tions.

She was the New Nor­folk team’s first aid of­fi­cer, and was with the play­ers when the um­pire went down.

“Some­one sang out to me from the mid­dle of the ground, and I just ran straight out and found [the um­pire] and he was with an­other um­pire at the time who was as­sist­ing him,” she said.

“I could see straight away that he wasn’t get­ting any oxy­gen be­cause he was go­ing grey, so I made sure his mouth was clear … and then just started CPR. We sent for a de­fib­ril­la­tor that one of the guys said they had.”

As she as­sisted, a nurse ar­rived to help. They used the de­fib­ril­la­tor and sat with the um­pire un­til the am­bu­lance ar­rived.

For more in­for­ma­tion and to nom­i­nate go to pride­o­faus­tralia.com.au

Pic­ture: NIKKI DAVIS-JONES

LIFE­SAV­ING TURN: Mee­gan Geard, of Hayes, gave first aid to an um­pire who had a heart at­tack at a ju­nior foot­ball match.

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