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Reading Man Recognized for Saving a Life in Wakefield

A Reading man stopped and saved a Wakefield resident's life with CPR after seeing him stricken while walking around Quannapowitt.

L-R: Wakefield Fire Chief Michael Sullivan, Tom Byrne, and Tom Hanson, accompanied by members of the Wakefield Fire Department.
L-R: Wakefield Fire Chief Michael Sullivan, Tom Byrne, and Tom Hanson, accompanied by members of the Wakefield Fire Department.
Written by William Laforme

Wakefield selectmen and fire personnel took some time this week to honor a Reading man who helped save the life of a pedestrian who had gone into cardiac arrest. 

Tom Hanson of Reading, Fire Chief Michael Sullivan, Tom Byrne and his wife Brenda, and the fire department personnel who were on the scene within four minutes of Hanson's reported emergency by Lake Quannapowitt. 

Back on April 7, Hanson was reportedly driving by as Byrne went into cardiac arrest during a walk around Lake Quannapowitt. By performing CPR, Hanson was able to keep Byrne from additional heart damage until fire personnel could treat him with a defibrillator, which was credited with making "all the difference in the world."

Byrne noted that he had been particularly lucky during this type of incident, since its survival rate is under 10%.  

"When I think back on it - I'm a lucky man," Byrne said, also noting that he now happens to be co-chair of his workplace heart walk team. 

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