Hundreds of people attend free CPR and AED training sessions

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GREECE, N.Y. – The Greece Central School District partnered with Highland Hospital to offer free CPR and AED training sessions on Saturday at Odyssey Academy in Greece.

Interest in learning CPR has skyrocketed ever since Bills player Damar Hamlin went into cardiac arrest on the field in January.

Participants learned how to perform hands-only Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR). This emergency lifesaving procedure is performed when the heart stops beating. When administered immediately, CPR can double or triple chances of survival after cardiac arrest. Participants also learned how to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). 

Greece residents, Mark and Rebecca Knowles, began advocating for CPR training about 15 years years ago when their 7-year-old son went into cardiac arrest. Rebecca, a nurse, was able to administer CPR, which saved her son’s life. Since then, they have both trained thousands of people on CPR, and were the catalysts behind Greece Central adding hands-only CPR and AED training for all students in grades 6-12. 

“Our son suffered from cardiac arrest 15 years ago,” said Rebecca Knowles. “Myself and my husband, we did CPR on our son. He went through a lot of the things similar to Damar Hamlin. And today actually he’s one of our volunteers. He’s 22 years old. He’s also an EMT and a volunteer firefighter.”