Firefighter called a hero for saving woman’s life

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MARINE, IL (KPLR) - A Marine, Illinois volunteer firefighter is also being hailed as a hero tonight for his fast thinking.

Health experts say if he had not stopped to heal a heart attack victim. She would not be alive today.

FOX2's Patrick Clark talked with our hero tonight, and the family of the woman he saved.

You can credit Keith Mills haircut with saving a life.

Keith Mills/Saved life performing CPR:  “I had left work a little early to get a haircut on the way home”.

But first the Boeing engineer stopped at this Phillips 66 off Lilac Avenue in North County to get gas when he saw Michelle Clark collapse in front of him.

Keith Mills/Saved life performing CPR:  “Falls flat on her back so I kind of panicked a little bit, grabbed my EMS gloves out of the car and ran over there”.

She had a heart attack and heart failure.

Quick thinking and 12 years of training as a volunteer firefighter with the Marine, Illinois fire department kicked in.

Keith Mills/Saved life performing CPR:  “Every minute without CPR, the person`s chance of survival is dropping ten to 12%.  So what you`re doing is keeping them going long enough to get the AED on which is a shock and brings them back”.

Melissa Pflueger/Daughter-in-law:  “He literally dropped what he was doing to save a person`s life.  I mean, that`s priceless to us.  Besides being a hero he`s our guardian angel.  She`s the matriarch of the family.  She`s the one who holds everybody together and we almost lost her”.

Clark is still in intensive care and not out of the woods yet.

But she is communicating with pad and paper and wants to be the first one to thank mills when able.

Keith Mills/Saved life performing CPR:  “Do you feel like you`re a hero?

No.  Not really.  I`m lucky I didn`t get in trouble for sneaking out of work early”.

Melissa Pflueger/Daughter-in-law:  “You know, that`s good.  We`ll take it.  I`m glad he needed a haircut, we`ll take it.  And he said he was still able to make it to his appointment.  So that`s good.  Heh”.

The family is breathing a little easier and planning to learn the life-saving CPR ASAP.

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