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A School Community Came Together To Save a Man’s Life at a Recent Basketball Game

The Heroic Actions Took Place in January at Pentwater Public Schools

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The Pentwater Fire Department announced Wednesday that a man’s life was saved during a January homecoming game.

Fire officials said that on Jan. 27 at 5:52 p.m., the fire department and EMS officials responded to a report of an elderly male possibly having a seizure in the lobby of Pentwater Public Schools before the start of the junior varsity basketball homecoming game against Baldwin.

Teachers, parents and Pentwater Fire Department members attending the game immediately took action by administering CPR. One of the school’s AED was then used, and officials said it delivered a shock that restored a pulse and breathing to the patient.


The patient was taken to Mercy Health Hospital in Muskegon. It was reported that the patient was speaking during the ride and was awake and alert at the hospital.

Fire officials said the man has since been released from the hospital and is recovering well.

“There were a lot of things done right that added up to an amazing outcome,” said Fire Chief Jonathan Hughart, who was not at the game at the time of the incident. “We don’t usually experience this great of an outcome, but a chain of patient care occurred very quickly after the medical event occurred, which probably made a huge difference.”

Officials said the following people helped save the man’s life:


· PPS third-grade teacher Lucy Macher, whose son Nathan is a sophomore on the JV basketball team, heard the man say he needed help.

· Interlochen State Park Supervisor Chris Bush, who was there to watch his stepdaughter cheerleading, assisted with safely lowering the man while Macher went to the stands to get help from PFD’s Mark Haynor.

· Mark Haynor, lieutenant and medical first responder for Pentwater Fire Department, who was there to watch his stepson play, assumed the initial assessment and immediately began CPR.

· Danielle Roberts, who was there to watch her son play, called 911, which initiated a response from Life EMS, Pentwater PD and Pentwater Rescue.


· Renae Kieda, who was there to watch her son play, has a background in nursing and retrieved the AED, and then helped apply the AED pads.

· An unknown male with a background in nursing was there for the Baldwin team assisted with the AED and post-shock care.

· Brad Van Duinen was there because several of his children were involved in the nights’ events, is a Pentwater Fire Department firefighter and medical first responder who assisted with the AED and then ran two blocks to the fire department to get the departments’ rescue vehicle and equipment.

· Amy Grondsma, who was there to watch several family members involved in the nights’ events, is a former paramedic that assisted after the shock was delivered.


· Amanda Sniegowski, who was on duty for Pentwater Police Department and is also a medical first responder for Pentwater Fire Department, radioed that CPR was in progress and then assisted with post-shock patient care.

· Ralph Baker, Pentwater’s athletic director, helped responders and family by creating space and privacy for the patient.

“On that night, a community came together and saved a life,” the fire department said.

A recognition ceremony is being planned.

The incident wasn’t shared publicly until now because of the sensitive nature of the ordeal, and because the fire department wanted permission from the family and the people who helped.

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