First Responders Save 5K Runner Who Had Heart Attack Before Finish Line

When a runner went into cardiac arrest just steps from the finish line of a 5K, first responders running rushed to save his life.

Mike Randall fell to the pavement just before the finish line when he had a heart attack and flatlined, according to Trish Buchanan, who organized the Believe 208 5K and founded the organization. Randall's girlfriend lost her husband, a former Massachusetts state trooper, so it was a scary moment for the widow, according to Buchanan.

Luckily for him, there were already a lot of police, firefighters and EMS first responders on scene at the event, which was intended to raise awareness about the issue of police suicides due to factors like post-traumatic stress. When Randall collapsed near the finish line, a paramedic working the race and off-duty state trooper running both raced to his aid. When his heart stopped, they revived him with the paramedic's defibrillator.

"I typically don't write much on FB, but I feel blessed that I am able to be writing this post as while participating in a 5K run charity event on Sunday morning in Hartford, CT I experienced a cardiac arrest a couple hundred yards from the finish line," Randall posted on Facebook. "The first to reach me was my love Janice who yelled for help. Fortunately, this event was in support of the brave and talented first responders, police officers and firefighters who were able to get to me within that 3 minute window and bring me back to life. God was surely watching over me."

Randall was initially taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment and was transferred to a hospital in Boston Tuesday to get open heart surgery. Buchanan went with Randall's girlfriend to the hospital and said the doctor said what had happened was a miracle.

"I am in a hospital in Boston and will be undergoing heart surgery in the next 26-36 hours, so would appreciate your thoughts and prays for me, my family, my Jan and her family," Randall posted on Facebook. "Always appreciate the difficult job our police, firefighters and first responders do in protecting & helping us and always hold them in the highest regards!!!"

There was a three-minute window to save him and he survived thanks to the help of the first responders, according to Buchanan.

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