A Fairfield man’s life was saved in July 2018 because his son followed precise instructions from a fast-thinking dispatcher and teamwork between the Fairfield police and fire departments and the responding medical helicopter.
A pair of Fairfield dispatchers, eight firefighters, a police officer, UC Health AirCare’s crew of three and Stephen Tacy’s son, Tyler, were honored Wednesday in Columbus for the Ohio EMS Star of Life Awards, where Middletown and Oxford were also among the nine departments honored.
“We are extremely proud of how well the system worked on this call,” said Fairfield Deputy Fire Chief Tom Wagner. “The system we have in place saved Mr. Tacy that day. That system is in place every day on every call.”
On July 27, 2018, Stephen Tacy, 65, and his adult son were working on a boat at the elder Tacy’s warehouse on Le Saint Drive in Fairfield.
Stephen’s neck came in contact with a 440-volt live wire, which electrocuted him. He lost consciousness, and Tyler called 911.
“When it happened, I was kind of in ‘go’ mode,” Tyler said when the city of Fairfield honored him in October 2018. “I just had to do whatever I needed to do.”
Tyler removed the wire, which, according to a proclamation read in October by Fairfield Mayor Steve Miller, “put himself at great risk.”
When Tyler could not feel a pulse, police dispatcher Tracy Brown instructed him to administer hands-only CPR. Tyler said in October that time flashed by but he remembered every second when he began CPR. Lessons from a CPR class five years before flooded back when Brown gave instructions.
Dispatch supervisor John Meyer worked the police side of the dispatch center and communicated with responding medical units while Brown was instructing Tyler.
Fairfield paramedics took over CPR from Tyler and performed a rapid assessment of Stephen’s condition.
The crew delivered a defibrillation shock, continued advanced life support and requested an AirCare transport to University of Cincinnati Medical Center, a Level 1 trauma center.
Paramedics also established an intravenous line to deliver fluids.
Fairfield Fire chief Don Bennett and Fairfield police Officer Craig Moore coordinated with the AirCare crew to establish a landing zone. When on the ground, the medical crew performed rapid sequence intubation on Stephen, placed him on a ventilator and started an IV.
Stephen was then transported to University of Cincinnati Medical Center, a level 1 trauma center for further treatment. He was discharged from the hospital a week later.
“This is a perfect example of how pre-arrival CPR instructions from dispatch, teamwork, and cooperation with local providers can deliver the vital care needed to make a life-saving difference,” according to a release from the EMS Star of Life Awards.
Here are those involved in helping save Stephen Tacy’s life back in July:
• Fairfield Fire Chief Don Bennett
• Fairfield Fire Capt. Jamie Ruhl
• Fairfield paramedic Brent Gerrety
• Fairfield paramedic Jon Krueckeberg
• Fairfield paramedic Kyler Schauer
• Fairfield paramedic Chris Simpson
• Fairfield EMT Tristen Fields
• Fairfield EMT Billy Spoonamore
• Dispatch Supervisor John Meyer
• Dispatcher Tracy Brown
• Fairfield Police Officer Craig Moore
• Air Care pilot Jeff Logeman
• Air Care MD Dr. Michael Kaszky
• Air Care RN/paramedic Jennifer Hacker
• Tyler Tacy, son of the patient
• Stephen Tacy, patient
Thank you for reading the Journal-News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to exclusive deals and newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Journal-News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.