Florence County first responders applauded for their efforts

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) A boy on the brink of death is saved, and emergency responders in Florence County are recognized for their efforts.

"I got the phone call and I was at work in Columbia, and there had been an accident, and it was needless to say it was an emotional roller coaster," said Rainey Josey.

Rainey Josey talked about those hours, on Oct. 14 that seemed like an eternity as he tried to get back to Florence.

Josey's 14-year-old son suddenly collapsed on West Florence High Schools' tennis court while in PE Class.

"My whole PE class was outside running around the tennis court and I basically collapsed, and my heart gave out on me," Wilson Josey said.

The teacher immediately got the school nurse, who knew exactly what to do: try to restart Wilson's heart.

Fire crews and first responders continued chest compressions while rushing Wilson to the hospital.

"By the time we got to the hospital we realized that Wilson was going to live. He had been in complete cardiac arrest, and they got his heart back going," said RaineyJosey.

Wilson's father Rainey publicly thanked fire crews, dispatchers and emergency responders for helping to save his son's life.

"I really believe that this could not have happened anywhere else in the United States and our son would have gotten any better treatment," said Rainey Josey.

"It's good to be appreciated for what we do, but you know, that's our job; it's what we get trained and paid to do, so it's nothing out of the normal," said Captain Todd Newell, Florence Fire Department.

Wilson's mother said that after Wilson's incident, Florence School District One has approved funding for all the elementary school's to have AED machines.

The middle schools and high schools already have them.

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