Every day, Cooper employees do remarkable things, serving others and saving lives. That dedication often extends beyond the walls of Cooper. As ambassadors, we are fortunate to be able to hear and share the remarkable stories of heroism by Cooper employees in the community.
On March 5, 2020, Cooper Co-Presidents/CEOs Kevin O’Dowd, JD, and Anthony Mazzarelli, MD, JD, MBE, honored one of those special employees – Annie Ahmeti, MSN, APN-C, one of the Advanced Practice Nurses in Vascular Surgery. On February 13, Annie’s quick thinking and action saved a man’s life.
After working all day, Annie went to the gym for her usual evening kickboxing class. After class, while chatting with friends, she saw a group of people running, saying there was someone down on the floor.
Annie, who has been a Cooper employee since 2010, went to the scene only to find a group of people standing by – but no one was assisting the person on the floor. She quickly established that he was unresponsive and without a pulse.
She took control of the scene, directing someone to bring her the AED, another to call 911, and another to clear the way, go to the front of the gym, and wait for EMS.
She asked the crowd standing by if anyone knew CPR and could help her but no one stepped up. She connected him to the AED, delivered a shock and performed six to seven rounds of CPR by herself with no help.
By the time the medics arrived, the patient was awake and talking!
When she returned to the gym the following day, the crowd gave her a standing ovation. Everyone is happy to work out next to her. She also received an update from the gym that he is doing very well.
Members of her department were on hand for the celebration as she received the Cooper Heroism Award.
“We are proud to have someone of Annie’s caliber representing Cooper. She truly embodies Cooper’s mission and is an outstanding employee and citizen,” said Kevin O’Dowd.
“We are extremely proud of the work you do here at Cooper every day, and we are in awe of your heroic actions on February 13,” added Dr. Mazzarelli.