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A Golfer’s Final Wish – The End

September 28, 2012

It was a beautiful fall day, perfect for just about anything, especially a round of golf. The team of retired buddies met as usual in the clubhouse. After a quick check-in, they walked outside, stepped into their electric carts, and rode off towards Hole #1.

The round started as usual with friendly banter back and forth. Bob wasn’t quite as talkative this morning, but it wasn’t enough to be noticeable. This was the situation until they were on their way back towards the clubhouse on the back nine. That was when Bob made a few comments about not feeling well.

By this time he didn’t look too well either. So, the group decided it was best to call it a day and get Bob back to the clubhouse. They almost made it back when it happened. Bob quit talking and went limp.

The dispatcher gave the short message – “Subject down at the golf course – unknown disposition.” What seemed like eternity was a mere couple minutes for our arrival. We wheeled our ambulance cart and equipment over to Bob.

The quick-look paddles positioned on the chest showed ventricular fibrillation. I reached over to the monitor, turned the dial to 200 joules, pushed the charge button, and re positioned the paddles on the chest. I shouted – Clear, Clear, Clear – then pressed the two red paddle buttons to send the shock.

Again I looked at the monitor screen. It changed. The monitor now showed a livable rhythm and Bob had a pulse. Immediately, I felt a surge myself – a surge of pride. Death had been postponed for the moment. I was a lifesaver!

It was about this time that one of Bob’s buddies turned to another friend and made a comment I have never forgotten. “Remember what Bob always told us?”, “I pray that when I die – it’s on the golf course.”

It hit me like a cup of Colombian coffee. I instantly went from “Hero to Goat” in a millisecond. I just fouled up this poor fellow’s last final wish on earth. Bob never regained consciousness and died three days later in ICU.

I have had over twenty-five years to think about that day on the golf course. Hopefully, Bob and I will get to talk one day.

The reason for me sharing this story is so you understand how vitally important it is to have a legally signed plan for what to do at the end of your life. You must carry a copy with you so somebody can present it to EMS personnel if they are accidentally called. And, be sure that all the right people know about the plan.

Don’t let a paramedic mess up “The End.”

*Bob was not the real name of the person in this story.

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