Bucks County Herald

Pennridge recognizes football bystanders for quick response

“Good Samaritans” stepped forward to help heart attack victim

MELINDA RIZZO



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Pennridge School District has reason to be proud of its own.

At a regular board meeting Dec. 4, Pennridge School Board and officials recognized the efforts of bystanders at the annual Thanksgiving football game. Their quick response to a health crisis saved a man’s life.

“In this day and age, I think people are afraid to be good Samaritans, and they stepped up and stepped in. It’s a credit to the community,” said former Pennridge School Board President Peter Yarnell.

According to Yarnell, four people – two men and two women- immediately went to the aid of a man at the game, who stumbled and fell while walking to a seat in the stands.

As it turned out, Peter Mahon of New Jersey was having a heart attack.

Nurse practitioner Brianne Benfield Mangeney, of Bedminster Township, saw Mahon stumble and she and an unnamed woman immediately went to help him. “I was three rows up and saw him fall,” Mangeney said.

“When we discovered he had no pulse and was barely breathing we began CPR chest compressions,” Mangeney said.

CPR stands for cardiopulmonary resuscitation. The Mayo Clinic website says CPR is an effective lifesaving technique used during many emergencies, including near drowning and heart attack.

From there, Pennridge athletic trainers brought an AED (automated external defibrillator) device, which indicated Mahon was indeed having a heart attack and needed to be treated immediately. “We shocked him and then the trainers took over the CPR chest compressions,” Mangeney explained.

Mahon was taken to Grand View Hospital, where he was evaluated and transferred to Doylestown Hospital for cardiac treatment.

Mahon collapsed a few minutes before the Pennridge-Quakertown game kick-off. “Everyone sprang into action. Even the Quakertown Marching Band moved aside to allow the ambulance room to get into the field,” Yarnell said.

School officials said Mahon and his family wanted a chance to personally and publically thank those who had saved his life.

Mangeney said it’s important to be alert in public places and to be willing to help any way possible. “If you know CPR or how to assist someone, step up. If you don’t know how to help, call 911,” Mangeney said.

For more rescue information visit mayoclinic on the web.

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