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Not the firefighter that helped my uncle.

Two days ago, my uncle had a heart attack. Before I go further, let me issue a huge spoiler alert: this story has a happy ending.

Basically, my uncle was at a car show. He began having chest pains that for about one minute he thought was indigestion. However, he very quickly realized that it was more than that. Fortunately, he was across the street from a fire station that was at that moment doing a CPR training class with all of the necessary equipment already out. They bundled him into the ambulance, got him hooked up to IVs, and rushed him to a heart specific hospital. There they did some sort of micro incision surgery and patched him right up. From the time that he noticed the first pains to the minute they checked him into his hospital room after surgery was 1 hour and 15 minutes.

When I talked to my uncle on the phone only hours later, I never would have guessed something was happening. When I visited him in the hospital the next day, he was up and walking around. It was insane.

The craziest part is, he had the “widowmaker” artery 100% blocked. Had he not had almost immediate care, he would have died. As it is, he decided to go back to work tomorrow (for a drastically reduced day).

This is radically different from when my father-in-law had his heart attack 18 months ago. He was in the hospital over a week, and they had to crack his chest to fix him. It took weeks to recover from that.

As it is, we’re all very grateful that my uncle is doing as well as he is. Thank goodness, among other things, for the technological advances of modern medicine.