Local “heroes” save man’s life after he collapses at a gym


Lansing, Mich (WLNS)– Two off duty health care workers at Sparrow Hospital are being called heroes after they jumped into action after an elderly man collapsed at Planet Fitness on W Saginaw St. in Lansing.

Shayanna Conley-Whitley decided to workout with her husband at Planet Fitness Monday morning, instead of going to her own gym.

“On the way to planet fitness he left his phone that has the workout with his trainer, so we had to turn around and go home, so I was instantly irritated, but I thank God that everything happened the way that it did because if I was not there at the time I was there, I wouldn’t have been able to try to assist and save this mans life,” Conley-Whitley told 6 News Monday evening.

In the middle of her workout, Conley-Whitley thought she felt her husband tap her on the shoulder. She later found out he never tapped her… she believes it was God giving her a sign that something was going on.

“I looked over and there was a guy on the ground and everybody was just crowded around and I just instantly ran over there,” she said.

The man who was in his late 70’s had no pulse. That’s when Conley-Whitley’s 20 years of experience as a Respiratory Therapist kicked in.

“Someone had put the patches on him, the AED patches. I started CPR,” she said.

One of the people assisting Shayanna was her co-worker who also happened to be at the gym at the right time. While the two of them worked on the man, a group of people formed a circle and prayed. By the time paramedics arrived the man had a pulse.

A Facebook post about the incident received hundreds of shares, with many people calling the two heroes.

“I don’t feel like a hero, I felt like I was doing my job outside of work,” Conley-Whitley said.

Surprisingly, this isn’t the first situation like this that she’s been in.

“This is actually my third time helping someone outside of work. Another time we were at a casino for Mother’s Day and a lady yelled her husband went down. I ran over there. I calmed the lady down, I did the compressions, she did the mouth to mouth until EMS got there. Another time was at the YMCA a kid like completely knocked himself out on the skateboard ramp and they called me. ‘Shay, can you please come over here,’ so I get over there and the kid was not breathing,” Conley-Whitley said.

Now, she’s encouraging other people to step up too.

“People should take the initiative to learn the basic cardiac life support. You just don’t know when you would need it it’s very useful to know what to do in the event that it happens.”

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