First aid saves young life

Lucky to be alive: Brad Golding (centre) with Kurtis Rae (left) and Sav Ferraro, who administered CPR when he suffered a cardiac arrest after a light training session last month.
Lucky to be alive: Brad Golding (centre) with Kurtis Rae (left) and Sav Ferraro, who administered CPR when he suffered a cardiac arrest after a light training session last month.

Kurtis Rae, a Maddington White City trainer, and Sav Ferraro, a White City player, made the call after one amazing afternoon, proof that timing really is everything.

Their 16-year-old teammate Brad Golding had collapsed after a light endurance drill on the afternoon of February 5, despite showing no signs of distress prior to the incident.

‘It was frightening because it just happened out of the blue,’ said Zishaan Kerbelker, another player with the club.

‘It was a very gentle warm-up. All of a sudden he had collapsed.

‘We thought he might have been winded, but when he didn’t get up we called people over to help.’

Mr Rae and Mr Ferraro, who had only just received his first-aid qualifications the previous day, kicked into gear.

‘I saw everyone huddled around, so I made my way over,’ Mr Rae said. ‘My coach thought it may have been a fit.

‘His shoulder was in a funny position, he wasn’t responding to his name and he wasn’t breathing.’

Mr Ferraro, injured at the time and at training only to run laps, used skills gained from a four-hour course the previous day to help save Brad’s life.

‘It was amazing,’ Mr Ferraro said. ‘I just thought, ‘I gotta do what I gotta do’, and did what I had been taught. It just clicked in.’

After Mr Rae and Mr Ferraro performed two-man CPR for six minutes, Brad began to bleed from the mouth.

‘That’s when we had to stop,’ said Mr Rae, an ECU sports science and football student.

‘Luckily, someone had called an ambulance and it arrived just in time. It was perfect timing.’

It was later discovered that Brad had gone into cardiac arrest.

After being fitted with an implant to control his high heart rate, Brad is on the mend, but had CPR not been administered doctors say he would have had only a 10 per cent chance of survival.

‘I really owe everything to these guys for saving my life,’ he said.

‘If it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be here.

Brad’s mum went to Cockburn MLA Fran Logan to nominate the two for a hero’s award.

‘This is a classic example of why everybody should do a first-aid course,’ Mr Logan said.

‘Sports clubs should have a number of people trained in CPR first aid, because the likelihood of an injury is high.’

Football West said they would be signing up to the Red Cross’ Project Defib initiative this week and encouraged all clubs to buy a defibrillator with the grant on offer.