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Marana woman pays it forward after saving brother's life with CPR

Northwest Fire District Public Educator
Posted at 6:46 AM, Feb 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-26 09:02:54-05

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — A simple jog around Gladden Farms Community Park in Marana ended in a call to 9-1-1.

"While my brother was in the bathroom, he went into cardiac arrest. Your adrenaline kicks in and you start trying to determine what it is that you need to do," said Amy Allen.

Allen immediately started cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on her brother.

"There were several times, as I was doing compressions, that the 9-1-1 operator had me count out loud. That gave her an idea of how quickly I was doing the compressions," said Allen.

Allen performed compressions for a total of seven minutes. The Northwest Fire District responded, shocked her brother's heart with an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and rushed to the hospital.

"It was hard. I struggled a little bit with it. I found for me, if I talk about it, it's very therapeutic," said Allen

For that reason, Allen is paying it forward. She is now a part of the team that helped her family. She works as a Fire and Life Safety Educator for Northwest Fire District.

"I quickly realized that working in public safety was where I wanted to be. I get to go to schools and teach the kids fire safety. I also work with our senior citizen community," said Allen.

Allen teaches people how to do CPR, so they can save a heart just like she did.

"Providing good compressions is really all you need. The opportunity to teach somebody to save a life is something that has been really important to me," said Allen.

Allen's brother underwent double bypass heart surgery and survived.

To learn more about education provided by Northwest Fire District, click here.