Diarmuid's story

“I am living proof that CPR saves lives”

Diarmuid O’Connell is a 24-year-old teacher from Cork and in February 2009 his heart stopped beating.

Diarmuid collapsed with a sudden cardiac arrest during a game of football.

Fortunately, his teammate Gerard O’Leary, 28, realised the serious nature of Diarmuid’s collapse and immediately started performing CPR.

Gerard was trained by the Irish Heart Foundation as part of a CPR pilot programme in secondary school and he wasted no time stepping in to save his friend.

“I started CPR straight away and someone ran for a defibrillator,” he explained.

Diarmuid went on to make a full recovery however he is very much aware that CPR saved his life.

“I am living proof that bystander CPR saves lives,” said Diarmuid.

Since his collapse, both Diarmuid and Gerard act as ambassadors for the Irish Heart Foundation and for CPR, paying visits to schools to spread the importance of these lifesaving skills.

Please donate here to help us train more lifesavers like Gerard in bystander CPR.



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