Muscatine resident honors firefighters who saved his life

Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 3:27 PM CST
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - A Muscatine resident honors firefighters who saved his life after he passed out in his living room during a sudden cardiac arrest event.

Ben Eversmeye was walking across his living room on Jan. 2, 2022, when he fell to his knees and then dropped to his side, according to a media release.

“My wife noticed my eyes were rolled back in my head,” Eversmeyer said. “I had apparently gone into cardiac arrest.”

His wife called 911 and started CPR, Muscatine officials said. The paramedics arrived 90 seconds after being dispatched. The paramedics took over CPR and used an automated external defibrillator, or an AED, to shock his heart.

“I had a pulse and was alert when they loaded me into the ambulance,” Eversmeyer said.

Eversmeyer was taken to the University of Iowa Hospital Emergency Room and talked with the paramedics as they unloaded him at the hospital. Three days later, Eversmeyer received an ICD, also known as an implantable cardioverter defibrillator, and was released from the hospital the next day.

Ambulance Operations Chief Gary Ronzheimer with Fire Captain Joe Timmsen, and firefighters Mike E. Collins and Josh Rudolph were on the crew that responded to and saved the life of Eversmeyer.

The odds of surviving a cardiac arrest are not good with 70 percent of adult cardiac arrests occurring at home. Only 11.4 percent of patients survive through discharge from a hospital, Muscatine officials said. Everysmeyer was one of the lucky ones and the odds of his survival began when his wife began CPR, and increased higher with the quick response of Muscatine paramedics.