Store workers, medics work for over an hour to revive man

(Lindsay Bramson/KXAN)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Strangers in North Austin rushed to a man’s aid at a Costco gas station in North Austin after the man suffered a heart attack on Friday.

GOING IN-DEPTH // Immediate Help
The fact that bystanders jumped in is vitally important because CPR performed immediately after sudden cardiac arrest can double, or even triple, the victim’s chance of survival.But, according to the American Heart Association, less than one out of every three cardiac arrest victims receive CPR from a bystander.

Because of that, less than 8 percent of people who suffer cardiac arrest outside of a hospital survive.

Costco employees and Austin paramedics performed CPR on a man in his 70s  for more than an hour.

“He had a motorcycle…the motorcycle actually fell on top of him,” said Matthew Skender. He was inside working when he heard what was happening. “Our gas station attendant pulled the motorcycle off him.”

Skender rushed over as fast as he could and helped perform CPR until EMS arrived.

“I’m a former soldier, a veteran from Iraq,” he said. “We did stuff like that in Iraq but I never thought I’d have to do it again in civilian life.”

About 20 employees at the Costco are trained to perform CPR in case of an emergency.

“One of the responders that came out was actually our trainee,” said Tyler Smith, the assistant general manager. “We go through that (training) every few years.”

Quick action among the employees is what EMS workers say helped save the man’s life. An ambulance showed up just minutes later.

“His heart started again even after over an hour of CPR because all those links in place,” said Cmdr. Michael Wright.

Employees are also trained to use a defibrillator which helps walk them through the process.

At last check the victim was at a local hospital in critical condition. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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