Honoring heroes: West Seattle-residing paramedic shares “citation”

March 29, 2009 10:03 am
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 |   West Seattle people

We first heard about it from Kathy (thank you!), who e-mailed WSB to say that she’d heard Dave Pedras, a paramedic/firefighter who lives in West Seattle, will be honored for his role in a rescue last summer. We checked with the Fire Department, and spokesperson Dana Vander Houwen said it’s true, sending along complete details:

Firefighter/Paramedic Dave Pedras will be recognized with a Unit Citation at the Seattle Fire Department Awards Ceremony which is taking place on Thursday, May 7. Unit Citations are awarded to units at the scene of an emergency for outstanding performance of an exceptionally difficult task, performance under hazardous or adverse conditions and for exemplifying the importance of teamwork and cooperation. Engine 33, Ladder 12 and Medic 28 received Unit Citations for the rescue.

On August 22, 2008 at around 8:30 pm, someone called 911 reporting that a person was missing in Lake Washington near Pritchard Island Beach. When the first Unit (Engine 33) arrived on the scene, they got information from bystanders about where the patient was last seen. Firefighters Dennis Stanley and Jason Hess (both of Engine 33) immediately entered the water and went out about 60 feet off shore to the area where witnesses had last seen the patient. After two to three minutes of searching, using a flashlight, Firefighter Hess was able to see a shadow below the surface. Firefighter Stanley dove down approximately 10 feet and found the patient and brought her up to the surface – she was unconscious and unresponsive.

Firefighters Stanley and Hess worked together to swim her back to shore. The patient was placed on a backboard – she was still unconscious and unresponsive and did not have a pulse. Firefighters and Firefighter/Paramedics immediately started CPR. The patient was quickly moved into a Medic 28.

Firefighter/Paramedics Dave Pedras and Dave Head of Medic 28 provided advanced life support and ongoing CPR with the help of the firefighters on the scene. Through the quick actions of responding firefighters and teamwork by all those who responded, the patient’s pulse returned. She was transported to Harborview, and 15 minutes after she arrived she had strong vitals and a good prognosis from the Emergency Room staff.

Kathy has firsthand knowledge of what happened after that, and says the rescued woman made a full recovery. Medic 28 is based at Station 28 in Rainier Valley.

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