Tuesday 19 March 2019

'I am very lucky they kept me alive' - Councillor who collapsed at home praises young sons for doing CPR

Catherine Devine

Catherine Devine

A popular councillor and father-of-three who was left fighting for his life after he collapsed at home has praised his young sons for saving his life.

Athlone Cllr John Dolan (FG) was rushed to Galway University Hospital on July 7 after collapsing from a shock illness at his home.

The dairy farmer (49) was placed in an induced coma after he suffered from heart problems.

Mr Dolan told Independent.ie that he has been released from hospital and is doing "fairly good".

Cllr John Dolan
Cllr John Dolan

"I was very lucky. Thank God I came back from the coma. I spent five and a half weeks in hospital and I'm delighted to be home."

Mr Dolan said that a heart condition caused his collapse.

"I was with my two sons Cathal (16) and Shane (21) when I just collapsed. The boys rang an ambulance and the paramedics instructed the boys how to do CPR on me until they arrived. I am very lucky that the boys kept me alive."

The popular councillor praised the HSE saying that the ambulance arrived within 10 minutes and that he received excellent care in hospital.

"This Christmas is more special for my family because we could have had a very different income. It's terrible to think that my family could have been spending Christmas without me. It's such a special family time. It makes you appreciate how fragile life can be.

"My family had the toughest part during my illness. It was a very worrying time for them. Only a small percentage of people come back from what I did. I'll definitely be taking it easy for a while."

Mr Dolan urges everyone to learn CPR as "you never know when you'll need it".

"My sons doing CPR on me before the ambulance arrived saved my life. They were unreal. We should all have basic CPR training."

He also praised the community for rallying around him during his illness.

"Everyone has been so unbelievable. It really puts everything into perspective."

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