By GORDON JACKSON The Brunswick News | Posted: Wednesday, September 9, 2015 12:00 am
College of Coastal Georgia school of Nursing graduate Nichole Regul hugs Leon Frazier at a ceremony Tuesday honoring Regul and Joi Martin for saving Frazier’s life. Frazier was found unconscious and not breathing at Camden County High School in late July after suffering a heart attack.
KINGSLAND — Leon Frazier, head custodian at Camden County High School, shouldn’t be alive after suffering a heart attack on July 23.
He died twice and was revived before he was hospitalized.
Kingsland Fire Rescue Chief Terry Smith credits two women for saving Frazier’s life. Both of them say it was good timing and CPR training, knowing what to do when Frazier was discovered on the floor, barely breathing and having a very faint pulse.
Nichole Regul, a recent nursing graduate from College of Coastal Georgia, believes it was fate that she showed up at Camden High to get her daughter’s schedule because it was not the day she was supposed to be there. She had come on the wrong day.
Regul, among the first to discover Frazier on the floor, immediately began administering CPR.
“I was in my own world,” Regul said. “I was in the moment. I was terrified.”
Despite how she felt inside, Regul appeared calm and in control when Joi Martin arrived. Martin, just appointed assistant principal at the high school’s ninth-grade center, wasn’t planning to be at school but had learned about a staff meeting.
After the meeting, Martin was told about Frazier and she ran to the scene. Her first question was if Regul wanted her to grab a defibrillator.
“It was a perfect storm,” Martin said of the events that brought the two women together.
Martin had recently been certified in CPR so everything was fresh in her mind.
“I feel I was a little more confident because the nurse was there,” Martin said. “It was happening so fast.”
Even though they work in the same complex, Frazier, who is already back to work, didn’t know Martin was one of the people who revived him.
“I work with her and didn’t even know it,” he said.
Frazier was formally introduced to both women during a presentation honoring them Tuesday at the Camden County School Board meeting.
There was no handshake when he was introduced to the women credited with saving his life. Instead, he embraced both women.
“It has changed my outlook on life,” he said. “Every day is a gift.”
Stuart Sullivan, owner of a business that provides first aid and CPR training, said there is no doubt in his mind that the two women saved a life because of their training.
“If you don’t have a pulse and you’re not breathing, you’re dead,” he said. “They were the only people who could do anything.”
Sullivan believes it was fate that both women should not have been at the school the day Frazier suffered his heart attack.
“You talk about angels being at the right place at the right time,” he said. “If these ladies weren’t there, it would be a different story right now.”