Powerheart to the Rescue: Fast-Acting Coaches, Principal Save 13-Year-Old Student’s Life


Amanda Marquez at ceremony where her coaches and school principal were recognized for saving her life using an AED.

On August 23, 13-year-old Amanda Marquez went into sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) during volleyball tryouts at Creek Valley Middle School in Carrollton, Texas. Fortunately, the school’s coaches were prepared. While the vice-principal called 911, Principal Nicole Jund brought the school’s automated external defibrillator (AED) into the gym.

Coaches administered CPR, and Jund opened the AED and attached the pads. The Cardiac Science Powerheart G3 AED provided step-by-step prompts to walk Jund through the rescue and administered the single shock that got Amanda’s heart beating again.

Amanda later received an implantable defibrillator. She is back at school and is expected to make a full recovery

On September 7, the city of Carrollton recognized Ashley Nichols, Shelby Dawson, Becca Chagnon, Nicole Jund, and Beri Deister for saving Amanda’s life. They received the city’s Life Saving Award for their actions. Kyle Foster, Cardiac Science Territory Manager, represented Cardiac Science at the ceremony.

“There are a million times we could thank you,” wrote Amanda’s father and mother, Joe and Jan Marquez, in an email to Kyle Foster, Cardiac Science AED Area Manager, “but that will never say, with enough gratitude, how much importance the AED played in this recovery from a potentially deadly situation. The on-site placement of the AED, and having it in the hands of correctly trained persons, were the deciding factors in her returning to a normal sinus rhythm well before the ambulance arrived.”

A 2007 Texas AED law requires the state’s schools to have AEDs and school coaches to be trained in defibrillator use.

The heroes that helped saved Amanda Marquez on the volleyball court at Creek Valley Middle School. (Picture taken from Creek Valley Facebook page). The heroes that helped saved Amanda Marquez on the volleyball court at Creek Valley Middle School. (Picture taken from Creek Valley Facebook page). 

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