Exclusive: VA Nurse saves man's life at State Fair
Nearly a month after saving a man's life at the state fair a VA nurse is finally taking credit for her heroic actions.
Melinda Thompson says it was just a day at the fair with family but it turned into so much more.
About a week before all of this a relative told the normally outspoken Melinda to be quiet and let God work in her life.
She says listening to that advice ended up saving a man having a heart attack at the State Fair.
Melinda says it started out as a very rainy day at State Fair.
But it was a special one, celebrating her daughter Lailah's birthday, so although the rain poured Melinda decided to be patient.
\"I probably would have left. I probably would have argued with the ticket lady, I would have gotten my money back. That would have been my normal response but that wasn't the case,\" said Melinda.
So back to Spin City they went. But on the way, spotted a man on this bench in distress.
\"At this point I went to talk to him and he was taking shallow breaths and foaming at the mouth. I wanted to tell him it was going to be OK but when I looked at him, his lips had turned blue and he just didn't have a pulse. At that point I said 'We need to start CPR now!' \" she said.
Critical care nurse Kristi Engelberg was among those who helped Melinda administer CPR.
\"I'm like shes got this. I didn't even know what her background was but I was like she's doing awesome, \" said Engelberg.
\"Me and this lady, we just started to switch off. I started to do the compressions and I was yelling for a switch and as I was yelling for a switch, he breathed again,\" said Melinda.
They didn't know what was wrong but Melinda doled out orders to keep the man alive.
\"Everybody had a task. She kept time, he's doing compressions, we're swapping out. We did maybe 3-4 rounds of compressions,\" said Melinda.
Wondering. but not knowing if the man made it until her supervisor realized Melinda was the VA hero.
\"She said, 'You saved someone's life!' and I remember all I could say was, he lived? And at that moment I burst into tears. Because I always wondered but in the same breath I did what I was trained to do,\" she said.
We've been told the man was treated and released from Froedtert. Melinda hopes, one day she will be able to meet him.