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Chicago cop helps nurse, TSA officer revive heart-attack victim at O’Hare

Updated: July 10, 2013 12:16AM

A 71-year-old man collapsed Tuesday morning while waiting in a security line at O’Hare Airport.

His skin was turning blue. He had apparently had a heart attack.

An off-duty nurse who happened to be nearby performed CPR and a Transportation Safety Administration official helped with chest compressions.

The man collapsed about 11:55 a.m. A couple of minutes later, Chicago Police Canine Officer Pat McGrath, 32, who was on patrol nearby, showed up and took over the exhausting duty of administering chest compressions. An automated external defibrillator was attached to the man’s body.

His wife looked on in fear as he struggled for life.

The defibrillator sent out two shocks, each time telling the first-aid workers to stand clear.

“After the second shock, the blue started to fade a little bit, and he began moving his eyes,” said McGrath, a nine-year police veteran. “We were all cheering for him. I was saying, ‘Keep fighting, brother. You can make it.’ ”

After several more minutes that felt like hours, paramedics arrived in an ambulance and took over. They shocked the man again with another defibrillator and rushed him to Resurrection Medical Center, where he remained in critical condition Tuesday night.

The man’s wife, who asked not to be named, said her husband was “not out of the woods yet,” but she was thankful for those who stepped up to help.

“The young police officer was wonderful. And he would definitely not be alive right now if not for the young beautiful blond nurse. She was there in the first two minutes and saved his life. I have no idea who she was,” the wife said.

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