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Eight Life Saver Awards given in Lake Shore

It was an emotional night in Lake Shore as events of Sept. 13, 2013, were remembered at Monday’s city council meeting.

That was the day Mary Miller, owner of Turtle Town Books & Gifts in Nisswa and wife of Lake Shore City Council member Doug Miller, went into cardiac arrest at Zorbaz on Gull Lake.

Doug was sitting with the council and Mary was in the audience Monday night, April 28, when six Life Saver Awards were handed out to those credited with helping Mary survive that day.

Receiving the awards from Kevin Lee, North Ambulance manager, and Steve Sundstrom, Lake Shore police chief, were citizens Mary and Glen Miller and Wayne Nelson; Donald Hannahs, a Crow Wing County first responder; Brennan Olson, Lake Shore police officer; and John Bukovich, former Lake Shore police chief and former city council member.

When Mary collapsed at Zorbaz on Sept. 13, Glen and Mary Miller, Nelson and Bukovich immediately started CPR on her, and Olson and Hannahs used a defibrillator.

“We are very thrilled to say that our victim, Mary Miller, is alive and well, surviving cardiac arrest and is on the road to full recovery,” Sundstrom told the council and audience before handing out the Life Saver Awards.

“We thank them for being there and helping,” an emotional Doug Miller said.

“Thank you, obviously, is not enough,” Mary Miller said. “The cardiologist said to me, ‘When you recover from this, and you’re going to, and you aren’t going to have brain damage, make sure you thank those people on the ground because they’re the ones who saved you.’ There really is no way to say thank you.

“When you put on your uniform every day and go to work, people like me say, ‘Wow, you gave me my life back,’” she said.

Lee credited those who performed CPR and used the defibrillator.

“There’s no doubt in my mind that that made a difference,” he said, noting a cardiac arrest victim’s chances of survival go down 10 percent every minute he or she doesn’t get CPR.

Also receiving Life Saver Awards for an incident last June where CPR and a defibrillator were used were Lake Shore police officer Mike Heldt and Sundstrom.