Nurse Helps Fundraise for Device That Helped Save Her Life

October 20, 2017 06:40 PM

The LUCAS device is a machine that gives steady CPR without tiring people out.

However, it also costs up to $15,000.


To help bring one of the devices to the volunteers EMS Crew in Cambridge, Wisconsin, Alicia Bravo participated in a race to help raise the funds.

Little did she know that she would someday need to use the device.

"I had our oldest son on the dock with me fishing when I noticed something was wrong with the boat not moving," Mike Bravo, Alicia's husband, said.

Bravo was training for a triathlon on Wisconsin's Lake Ripley and for some unknown reason, she'd asked her family to trail her in case something happened.

Something did.

"My sister pulled me out of the water and my dad immediately started CPR, so I had oxygen to my brain and all of my organs within seconds of my heart stopping," she said.

Bravo has little to no memory of the event, but can recall the events based on her family's vivid memory of the day her heart stopped.

When Bravo's lifeless body reached the dock, her husband took over CPR until first responders arrived with the LUCAS device.

"There is a fear of not knowing what you're doing, what to do, how hard to do it, for how long," Mike Bravo said about performing CPR.

It only takes three minutes for brain damage to occur if oxygen isn't flowing.

However, because Bravo's family knew how to do CPR, they were able not only able to keep Bravo alive, but were also able to bring her back as the active mother of two young boys that she had always been.

"I want people to be empowered and be brave and have confidence that they can make a difference in someone else's life," she said.

That constant CPR action is why Bravo is on her feet today.

She's back to running races and is now working to teach as many people as possible how to do bystander CPR and how to use an AED machine.

"If someone's inspired by my story, learn CPR and save someone else, then. That's the biggest thing for me," she said. "I just want more lives saved. We need more survivors"

Bravo partnered with Surly Brewing on Friday night to hold the CPR training event, "Pump and Pints". Volunteers from HCMC taught those in attendance how to give CPR and how to use an AED.

Bravo is donating all of the money from the event to the Cambridge, Wisconsin volunteer EMS crew, the same crew that helped save her life.

They'll use the proceeds for new CPR training equipment and put the rest towards a new ambulance.


If you'd like to donate, click here:



Katherine Johnson

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