One man is lucky to be alive after collapsing at the CMA Music Festival in downtown Nashville Saturday night.
Joe Cooke’s heart suddenly stopped and he wasn’t breathing.
“Well, I was enjoying the CMA [Fest] sitting down watching Billy Ray Cyrus and I got over-heated,” said Cooke of Franklin, Kentucky.
Another festival-goer, who happens to be a nurse, witnessed the terrifying incident and immediately rushed to the man’s side.
Cindy Miller, of Evansville, Indiana, immediately began CPR on Cooke.
Miller, who has worked in the emergency room for over a decade, said her life-saving instincts just kicked in.
“Paramedics put the defibrillator pads on him. It didn’t fire and so we started CPR again and then the gentleman started waking up,” said Miller.
The nurse’s quick actions paid off, and Cooke started breathing again.
By the time LifeFlight paramedics arrived, the man was doing much better than they expected.
“By the time they had gotten him up to the ambulance for transport, [the man] was actually talking,” said David Hiller, a paramedic with the Vanderbilt LifeFlight event medicine team.
Miller disappeared as quickly she came to the rescue, but News 2 was able to track her down Monday.
She said she does not feel like a hero, she was just doing her job.
“This is something I do every day,” Miller explained.
Cooke, who was diagnosed with heat exhaustion, was released from the hospital just two days after the scare. He said he is grateful for Miller’s heroic efforts.
“I’d like to tell her thank you very much. You saved my life,” said Cooke.
“Not much do you ever hear about the good things that you do, so this was a very wonderful surprise,” said Miller.
Cooke is expected to make a full recovery.