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Getting & Giving A Second Chance

January 28, 2011, 6:10 PM by Kelli Grant

Getting & Giving A Second Chance
LUVERNE, MN - We first introduced you to, Cindy Kurtz, a Luverne wife and mother in November. She died on her back porch last year, but thanks to CPR and a shock to her heart, lived to tell her story.

Fifty-year-old Cindy Kurtz is thankful to be giving back. She's thankful because this machine brought her back.

“It's very emotional too because there's times I think I might not be here,” Kurtz said.

After a week of complaining of chest pain, and even being told it was acid reflux, Kurtz's heart stopped.

“Luckily everything fell into place that day. With Jeff showing up, being only a couple blocks away from our house with the AED, Mark and Jonathan being right there to start the CPR on me,” Kurtz said.

While her husband and son started CPR and then called 911, a state trooper pulled up and right behind him was a Rock County Sheriff's deputy,  both carrying an AED.

“I just figured that's kind of a first aid kit thing, you should have that,” Kurtz said.

But while in the hospital she learned just how lucky she was. Only two Rock County Sheriff deputies have AED's in their cars. Six respond to emergencies without having one.

So Kurtz began a push to get them placed in all deputy vehicles. And thanks to the community, her efforts raised thousands of dollars.

“Here we have an opportunity if we have to do something, we can do something instead of standing by and just watching and waiting for the ambulance to come,
Rock County Sheriff Evan Verbrugge said,

With an $8,000 grant from the Luverne Area Foundation, $4,500 from Sanford Health and donations from businesses and people in the community, she raised nearly $18,000 and was successful at putting an AED in every squad car.

“This is always something that got put on the wayside and we never really thought about it because we never really had an incident where we needed an AED right away because the ambulance was able to get there so quickly,” Verbrugge said.

Rock County Sheriff Evan Verbrugge says because of a tight budget, the money just wasn't there.

But thanks to Cindy, who got her own second chance, those she’s never met will get a second chance as well.

The money raised helped buy nine AED's. So along with deputies getting one for their car, one was donated to Sharkee's Sports Bar, the Eagles Club and to Sanford Medical Center Luverne.

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