AKRON, OH (WOIO) - Sudden cardiac death -- it is as scary as it sounds. Your heart just completely stops for no reason.
For the man we talked to, when he crossed the start line of the Akron marathon a couple weeks ago, it was about to become his reality.
"I felt great through the first mile," said Tony Lindeman.
For Tony Lindeman, this was his third Akron marathon, eighth marathon of his life. "After the second mile I lost all memory I don't know what happened."
Those who witnessed it said Tony ran to the sidewalk and collapsed on his face. When he came to he was in the emergency room at Akron City Hospital.
"When the nurse came into the room told, me today was the luckiest day of my life."
He hadn't suffered a heart attack, but sudden cardiac death. Where basically the electrical signal to his heart just stopped.
"98% of the people that come in with a heart problem they can find and diagnose the problem. And the other 2%, a group that they aren't sure what happened and I fell into that category."
Among the 13,000 runners Tony just happen to be running next to Heather Pariso, whom he'd never met.
"Luckily I was running next to a nurse who saw me go down and immediately began CPR."
In fact there were some four or five medical professionals who saw him go down and helped with CPR until paramedics arrived with a defibrillator, and then got him to the hospital.
It was the quick action that saved this father of two.
"It's just a big thank you. Umm, there's really no other word to say. People need to know that you can save a life with CPR but you need to make sure you do it fast when you see something happen and make sure you're doing it correctly. It saved your life? It save my life."