Good Samaritans Save Man Whose Heart Stopped At Oakland Airport

By Susies Steimle

OAKLAND (KPIX 5) — During a harrowing rescue at the Oakland airport, Good Samaritans rushed to a passenger’s aid — saving his life.

The passenger was reunited with his lifesavers Thursday for the first time since they saved his life.

Steve Kirschner is meeting four nurses from Kaiser Permanente.

You can tell he doesn’t recognize any of them and you can also tell that his wife hasn’t forgotten them for a minute.

“When he collapsed, his heart stopped. They’re the ones who started it again,” said Susan Kirschner about her husband’s heart attack at Oakland Airport.

She calls them her four angels. She met them at the Oakland Airport after her husband, Steve Kirschner, had a heart attack.

Steve Kirschner said, “I remember walking out of the plane on the way back to the car and that’s the last thing I remember.”

“He collapsed,” Susan Kirschner said.

His heart stopped just outside Terminal 2.

After feeling pain in his arms and chest, he decided not to get on the plane that day.

On their way out of the airport, he fell to the ground.

Four nurses just happened to be nearby, but more importantly they’ll tell you, is that an AED defibrillator was within reach.

Oliver Naca, a nurse who works at Kaiser Permanente said, “Went to check his pulse, see if there’s any signs of life and everything just kind of kicked off from there.”

Naca said, “It’s a lifesaver and Steve is a prime example of that all it takes is action.”

It’s just lucky someone who knew how to operate one was nearby. The truth is these nurses weren’t supposed to be there, they took a wrong turn on their way out of the airport.

Naca said, “We’re very grateful we were there at the wrong place at the right time.”

Susan Kirschner said, “What if they had been there five minutes later? What if they were going to a flight and had to leave? What if we had gotten on the flight.”

Steve Kirschner said, “They performed perfectly and that made all the difference in the world for me.”

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