The saying, “at the right place at the right time” could not have been truer for UC San Diego student Skylar Lane.
It started out as just another work day for Lane, who is a student worker at the County of San Diego Aging and Independent Services. She was preparing for a meeting with a colleague, when all of the sudden, a man fell to the floor right outside of the meeting room. He was suffering from a heart attack.
That’s when Lane sprang into action.
“He was blue from the neck up,” Lane told NBC 7 Friday.
Given Lane’s extensive background in medical training, she knew instantly what she had to do in order to save County Library employee Paul Klatt’s life.
“I had to turn him over and put my fingers in his mouth to make sure there was nothing blocking his airway. Right away I had someone call 911, get the AED, and then just started doing compressions.”
Lane said there’s nothing that can prepare anyone for a moment like this, even while at work.
“It’s a stressful situation — no one knows how they’re going to react,” she explained. “He was gasping for breath. It was more of like, ‘he’s there!’ Being able to stay with him and to keep that momentum going was really motivating.”
Lane urges people, especially in the workplace, to become familiar of where AED defibrillators are located and how to use them.
“The AED is very easy – a lot of people believe it’s more difficult than it is. It’s meant for people who are not trained.”
In light of this incident, the Aging and Independent Services department will go through CPR training for all employees. Lane said she will be recertified for CPR training next week.
“I feel like I needed this as my closure so that all the hard work I did do in previous internships and all the jobs that I had lead up to this,” she shared with NBC 7.
Klatt is currently in recovery. Lane told NBC 7 that she looks forward to meeting him soon.
“I got news that he wants to meet me and I want to meet him. I’m really excited. There’s probably going to be tears. They’re happy tears — I’m glad he’s okay.”