KINTORE — On May 11, 2015, 15 year-old soccer player Andrew Stoddart of Embro died on the soccer field in Kintore, succumbing to a heart attack before emergency responders — first from Zorra Fire Services, followed shortly thereafter by Oxford County paramedics — could arrive on the scene to assist.
During an event on June 20 on those same fields — partly a memorial to Andrew, partly to provide information about a fundraising campaign that had, by then, already kicked into high gear in Andrew’s honour — an automated electronic defibrillator (AED) was donated in the young athlete’s name to the Kintore Optimists. The Optimists manage the soccer fields and sponsor minor soccer in the village.
Over 100 people in attendance at that event were informed that the AEDs have been designed so anyone can use them, complete with a voice describing the step-by-step procedures for rapidly assisting someone suffering from a heart stoppage. Firefighters from Zorra Fire Services were on hand to explain those steps.
But, for many in the public, the idea of actually using an AED is still very daunting.
To that end, a message was sent out by organizers of Kintore Minor Soccer last week, informing the community that another public training session has been scheduled for Monday, Jan. 11 at Chalmers United Church. The session will begin at 6:30 p.m.
“The soccer trailer has been set up with an automatic defibrillator unit that will be on hand at the fields for all games each season,” explained the email message. “We would like to offer training to anyone interested — coaches, parents, players.”
Those who would like to participate are asked to email firstname.lastname@example.org to ensure there’s space in the church basement to accommodate everyone.
For the winter, the AED is being stored at Chalmers United Church so it’s available for the community events held there.