Actions of OHP officers saves man’s life

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By Jim Perry
Managing Editor
The mission statement for the Oklahoma Highway Patrol was lived out Saturday.
Thanks to a pair of OHP officers from Cushing.
Trooper Tony Harper and Lt. Jeff James ventured to Rogers County on Saturday. They attended a fifth-grade football game — Harper has a son who plays; James’ daughter is a cheerleader — in Oologah.
After the game, Harper was walking out of the stadium with his son when they encountered an “older gentleman” who was “bent over and looked like he was distress.”
“I stopped to check on him but he requested that I just move on,” Haper said.
The Harpers continued on a short distance until Emerson, the son, looked back and saw the man down.
“I rushed back to him and Jeff arrived as well, along with a second unidentified lady,” Tony Harper said. “We found that he was not breathing!”
“I am not one to toot my own horn for just doing what is right,” James said.
With prodding, he repeated the story.
“We assessed the man and began CPR. We continued CPR until paramedics arrived on scene and they took over,” he said.
The OHP mission statement: “Working to provide a safe, secure environment for the public through courteous, quality and professional services.”
“God puts you where you’re supposed to be,” James said. “It was destiny.”
He said he knows that because his plans on Saturday were to be in Shawnee watch-ing his older daughter, Kamryn, play softball.
“Her games got rained out so I went to Oologah,” James said.
“We had just finished watching Kelsea cheer. I had visited with Tony for a bit and he was a little ahead of me on the steps.
“I heard somebody yell, ‘Somebody call 911!’ I gave my seat-backs to Trisha and Tony and I ran to this guy.”
James said he grabbed the man’s head and “rolled him over on his back.” He was breathing when the OHP got to him.
“He was breathing and we got his airway opened up. His pupils started to dilate.
“We lost him a couple of times. Tony started doing chest compressions and a woman who was saying his name ... his eyes darted over to her.”
Paramedics arrived and treated the man with electroshock.
“That was our extent of it,” James said.
James said Harper said he talked to the man’s wife and he was listed as “responsive.” The football coordinator at Oologah “said he was responsive and in stable condition.”