SC Firefighter Back to Work After Brush with Death

A Fountain Inn (SC) firefighter is back to work after going into cardiac arrest while at his mother’s home in February.

Firefighter Fred Hoppis, 50, described the February 1 incident in Simpsonville to the Tribune-Times ( Hoppis was lucky: when he collapsed that day, his sister, a certified medical assistant, was around to perform CPR on him and alert authorities, who responded to the scene to find a brother firefighter in distress. Paramedics performed therapeutic hypothermia on Hoppis, injecting him with near-freezing saline to bring down his body temperature.

Hoppis recalled no symptoms or warning signs of impending cardiac arrest.

“I am a walking miracle,” Hoppis said.

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The city of Fountain Inn is located in Greenville and Laurens counties. The Fountain Inn Fire Department is comprised of 11 volunteer and nine paid firefighters and paramedics, and provides service for the city and a 29.9 square mile area in the region.

For more on cardiac arrest and firefighters, consider Firefighter Health Report: Firefighting Affects Cardiac System, Firefighter Down-Cardiac Arrest!, Acute Coronary Syndromes in Firefighters: An “Athletic” Approach to Prevention, and Rapid Removal of an Unresponsive Firefighter from a Peaked Roof

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