“Be Prepared” Pays Dividends to US Boy Scout

In Jackson Wyoming, at about 3:00pm last Friday, a harried troop of Boy Scouts on a rafting trip arrived at the Sheep Gultch Boat Ramp in Snake River. They called for help, and forest rangers and nearby commercial guides arrived to find the troop giving CPR to an unconscious 16-year-old boy in acute cardiac arrest in the bottom of the raft. Rangers helped to continue CPR, called for an ambulance, retrieved an automated external defibrillator that they kept on-site.

The rafting party had stopped a popular diving and swimming spot when the teenager complained his heart was racing went into a seizure. The troop began to administer CPR and floated to the nearest boat launch.

Thanks to the quick application of CPR and the rapid deployment of the AED, the boy regained a pulse and started breathing again there on the boat ramp. Soon the ambulance arrived and took the teen to Star Valley Medical Center for treatment and later to a Children’s Hospital in Utah.

Doctors now report that the teenager is alive and with no apparent brain damage. They credit his recovery to the quick-thinking scouts and rangers who provided CPR and the nearby AED and to the temperature of the river water that slowed the boy’s metabolism.

The Snake River Fund, a non-profit collecting organization, had provided the rangers with two AED’s in 2001 and two more earlier this year. The rangers stored the AED’s with backboards at strategic points along the river in the hope of helping the public should the need arise.

The boy has been scheduled for surgery to fix a genetic heart condition that had not been previously diagnosed. ABC News Idaho

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