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Woman a ‘hero’ after dramatic rescue

KATRINA CLARKE THE DAILY GLEANER

Fredericton police are calling a local woman a hero after she pulled an unconscious woman from her vehicle and conducted CPR until paramedics could arrive.

Stacie Soontiens was out for a walk Monday afternoon, about to cross the road at the intersection of Smythe and Aberdeen Sts., when she saw a car rolling towards her at around 10 km/h, she said.

As the car veered into a utility poll and stopped, Soontiens, a cardiac nurse at Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital, noticed the driver’s head was tilted back – she appeared to be unconscious, she said.

She sprung into action.

“I put her car in park and pulled her out of the car and started CPR,” Soontiens said.“She had no pulse.”

Wady El-Khoury, who said he was driving by when saw the commotion, parked and called 911.

Paramedics arrived within minutes and used a defibrillator on the woman to get her pulse back, said Soontiens.

“You were courageous, what you did,” El-Khoury told Soontiens at the scene as paramedics treated the woman in an ambulance.

Soontiens, shaking slightly, was still trying to steady her breathing after the dramatic rescue.

“I’m OK,” said Soontiens. “I’m just glad she’s all right.”

Police Sgt. Dwight Doyle said the woman, who appeared to have suffered a cardiac arrest, was conscious when paramedics transferred her to Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital.

Police did not release the woman’s name, or provide an update of her condition.

Doyle praised Soontiens’ quick thinking and action.

“I would call her a hero,” said Doyle. “Not everybody – regardless of where they work – will stop and help.”

Soontiens said she’s never been involved in a rescue like that.

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