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Kennard-Dale nurse receives honor after saving student

Junior Gonzalez
York Dispatch
Graduates, 170 in total, during Kennard-Dale High School commencement at the High School in Fawn Grove, June 8, 2017. Dawn J. Sagert photo

A Kennard-Dale High School student is alive today because of the quick action by the school nurse last spring.

That's according to a paramedic who arrived at the school more than 10 minutues after nurse June Stratmeyer began working on a male student when he went into cardiac arrest  May 23.

Stratmeyer and other district staff received an honorary certificate and pin from the Southern York EMS on Monday, Aug. 21, for her decisive action that spring day.

She was joined by more than 100 staff members, along with members of the York County Commissioners, according to Southern York EMS paramedic Chris Biddle.

The incident: The male student was walking down a hallway when he suddenly clutched his chest and fell flat on the ground, according to Biddle.

The student did not have a pulse for several minutes, and a teacher immediately called Stratmeyer, as well as 911, Biddle said.

Stratmeyer, who Biddle said is an American Heart Association-certified CPR instructor, proceeded to perform CPR for nearly 10 minutes along with the use of an automatic external defibrillator (AED) until the student regained a pulse and began breathing again.

When Biddle and his EMS partner arrived, he initially thought the student had not lost his pulse, but a record on the AED confirmed that the student's heart had indeed stopped.

"The only reason that kid is alive today is because of that nurse," he said.

The student was admitted to an area hospital. Biddle said he is confident that Stratmeyer's fast response time led to minimal, if not virtually no, neurological damage.

"(Stratmeyer) was practical in his survival," Biddle said.

Editor's note: This story was updated to reflect the use of an automatic external defibrillator during the incident.