Two Detroit police officers responded quickly to save a runner who collapsed during the Free Press Marathon on October 24. The runner, a 26-year-old man, suffered a cardiac arrest.
Officers Dario Sharp and Troy Wesley were on patrol at the time when they saw the runner collapse. They ran immediately to him and began administering CPR.
“I was just hoping that he wasn’t going to die on me. I checked for a pulse. It was very, very faint, and we started chest compressions,” Sharp told Fox 2. Sharp then began reading the man’s pulse while Wesley took over compressions.
“As he started the compressions, he asked me if I could you take over,” Wesley said. “As I took over, he constantly kept his wrist and maintained reading of the pulse.”
A Good Samaritan also joined in to help, asking if she could give rescue breaths.
“She asked me, ‘Can I give rescue breaths?’ (I said) if you’re comfortable, go ahead, and she went right into it,” Sharp said.
The officers then made way for EMS in the middle of the run so the man could be transported to the hospital. The situation was “complex, but we made it happen,” Sharp said. Ultimately, their actions saved the man’s life.
The runner is recovering at Henry Ford Hospital and is in stable condition.
“I’m so happy that he’s doing well because losing a pulse twice — from my partner — we didn’t lose our edge; we got him there,” Wesley said.
Detroit Police Department Chief James White was proud of his officers’ actions. “Just listening to them being both so humble and here they are running against the grain, they didn’t talk about all those runners coming at you — to run against the grain. And then after getting a pulse and EMS showing up, also blocking traffic for EMS. That’s just amazing work, and I’m a very proud chief today, just outstanding work,” he said.
The two officers said they were just doing their job. “I just did it as part of a job; it is what DPD trained us to do,” Sharp said. “It feels good, and it was a good feeling.”
“I’m quite sure any police officer would have done the same thing, but I’m just glad we were there to save this young man,” Wesley added.
The Detroit Free Press Marathon was canceled last year due to the pandemic.