When Bob and Sue Turpen set out to run errands, going to Island Hospital was not on their list of stops.

While driving down Commercial Avenue, between Walgreens and Safeway, the car veered into on-coming traffic. That’s when Sue noticed Bob wasn’t breathing. She quickly pulled the emergency brake to stop the car. Without her phone, however, she was unable to call for help.

The driver of the vehicle behind them knew something was wrong and immediately called 911. A good Samaritan, who worked at a local assisted-living care facility, also pulled over and began CPR until paramedics could arrive. Bob’s heart had stopped. A first responder quickly pulled Bob from the car and continued CPR while in route by ambulance to Island Hospital.

“Island Hospital was the first place they brought Bob and I am so appreciative of everything they did,” says Sue. The man who called 911 gave Sue a ride to the Emergency Department while his passenger drove her car to the hospital. Meanwhile medical professionals continued to attend to Bob.

After 27 minutes of CPR and several AED shocks, the medical staff decided to give it “one last try.” Bob’s pulse returned. “It was a total miracle!” recalls Sue.

Once stable, Bob was transported to a hospital in Bellingham for further cardiac care where it was determined that Bob not only had a heart-attack, but also endured a stroke.

Bob was unable to work for several months while he recovered from surgery and money was getting tight. His doctor recommended cardio rehabilitation at Island Hospital. Because of your community donations to Island Hospital Foundation, Bob received a financial assistance grant to cover a portion of the cost of cardio rehab. Three days a week, Bob received therapy in the Cardio and Pulmonary Rehabilitation gym at Island Hospital as he worked towards a full recovery and eventually returned to work.

“I’ll never forget all Island Hospital did to save Bob’s life,” shared Sue. “You just have to keep counting your blessings.”

You too can save lives like Bobs. Your donation today can ensure life-saving services are available for you, your family, and your community in their moments of need.