Everyday Heroes: Todd Schisler - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Everyday Heroes: Todd Schisler

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(04/16/13) - Each year, the Great Lakes Bay chapter of the American Red Cross honors our friends, family and community members who answer the call for help.

This year, a JV soccer coach and high school health teacher is among the honorees.

"We were in the first half, the play was at the end of the field and he was coming off of the end line towards the penalty box area and he had fallen and when I turned down and looked, he was trying to get up and then he had collapsed down and so that's when we kind of knew that there might be a problem," said Todd Schisler, JV Soccer Coach.

Schisler will always remember May 2, 2012. It started like an ordinary day, with Todd coaching the girls' junior varsity soccer game at Bangor John Glenn High School.

Then referee Dave Shane collapsed on the field.

"At first I wasn't sure what was happening. Once I got there, I saw that he wasn't OK, initially I thought he was having a seizure. After he took a couple of gasps like he was fighting for breath, he went down and he stopped breathing, so I saw that he wasn't breathing. Then I told our athletic trainer that was also there that I was going to start CPR," Schisler said.

Shane had gone into cardiac arrest.

Shortly after, Schisler began giving Shane chest compressions. Then more help came from the athletic trainer with an automated external defibrillator.

"Initial shock happened and then they said resume CPR and so the AED told us that and so we continued CPR and we did it for a while longer and then the AED again told us to stop CPR while I analyzed, it shocked him again and told us to do CPR so we continued CPR and at that time the paramedics were pulling up and so when they got there, I continued to do CPR. While they evaluated him and they put him on defibrillator and we stopped and it shocked him again," Schisler said.

They were left wondering about Shane's fate.

"He was totally out when they put him in the ambulance and left him. I was really concerned that he may not make it," Schisler said.

The coaches called off the game that day. Later, they found out Shane lived to tell his side of the story. He doesn't remember much about that day. He only knows what people told him.

"It's kind of a blur. It's kind of nice to thank him now that I'm conscious. It took weeks and months to piece together and find out what happened. I'll ask my wife and she'll say, 'Well, they said in the ambulance they had more stress and you kept losing your heartbeat,'" Shane said.

Shane, who has Lyme Disease, says before the game, he told the other referee not to panic if he fainted.

"'You don't have to call 911 because I just fainted, just as long as I have a pulse.' When I fainted once three of four weeks before, they said at the hospital three weeks prior, 'sometimes you faint,'" he said.

Schisler says Shane was unconscious for at least 30 minutes before he was taken to the hospital. The referee believes he wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for the coach who came to his rescue.

"If I had been at another school and also if they didn't have a defibrillator there at the time, between the people there and the equipment there, I wouldn't have made it. Just to know that he was there and you take that training and it comes in handy," Shane said.

Schisler's father is a doctor and his wife is also in the medical field. He learned CPR when he was a child and his school also requires coaches to be CPR certified.

He doesn't consider himself a hero, but he does hope his story motivates others.

"If it inspires someone to get involved in CPR and learn those techniques that, Lord forbid, I be in that situation. I want someone to be certified to be trained and help me out, if that's the result of it, it's all worth it," Schisler said.

"When I look at my sons faces, when I see them and we talk about it, I realize I would have been gone that day," Shane said.

Shane is still undergoing treatment, and doctors are trying to figure out what caused him to go into cardiac arrest.

Meanwhile, he hopes to be around long enough to see another miracle play out on an athletic field.

"Plus, kind of want to live long enough to see the Detroit Lions win the Super Bowl. I've got another 30 years. I think I might see that after all," he said.

Schisler and all the other Everyday Hero will be honored at a banquet Wednesday night.

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