Two AEDs donated after jogger’s life saved

Alex Nehls, whose live was saved by an AED, handed the Leo-Grabill Sports Complex a brand new AED.

ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) Two Automated External Defibrillators (AED) were donated to two Allen County groups after a jogger’s life was saved by its shock.

One of those AED machines was donated to the Allen County Sheriff’s Department; it was their officer who first arrived on the scene and used the AED from his police vehicle.

Allen County Sheriff’s Department spokesperson Captain Steve Stone said there are nearly 30 AEDs for the entire department. He added this situation was an example of the benefit of having an AED readily available when needed.

One Saturday afternoon in April, Alex Nehls went for a jog near Baswin Cove and Baldwin Pass in St. Joe Township. The sheriff’s department said a resident, Greg Thomas, was across the street when he saw Nehls collapse in the grass along the road.

The story goes that Thomas ran to help Nehls and started CPR before Officer Eric Foster arrived and used the AED. Officer Foster delivered three shocks, the last to be done as Nehils was being loaded into the ambulance.

Stone said if not for the actions of Thomas and Officer Foster, Nehls would not have survived.

“I can’t say enough about Eric and Greg, ” Nehls said. “Those two to be so selfless, to step forward and do what they did.”

Officer Eric Foster (left) and Greg Thomas (middle) receive recognition by Allen County Sheriff David Gladieux for saving a man's life.
Officer Eric Foster (left) and Greg Thomas (middle) receive recognition by Allen County Sheriff David Gladieux for saving a man’s life.

Nehls is a physican’s assistant at OrthoNortheast (ONE). After his medical incident, ONE and its employees started a fundraiser to purchase and donate two AEDs.

The second AED was be donated to the Leo-Grabill Sports Complex where Nehls spends some of his free time. Each AED costs about $2,000, with batteries costing around $250 each.

Officer Foster and Thomas were both awarded by Allen County Sheriff David Gladieux Monday, October 5.

“Just to know that there’s people in the community that will step forward if the calling is there to do a selfless act and save someone’s life,” Nehls said. “I hope that I can do it, if I’m called to do it.”

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