ALBUQUERQUE (BNM) - Scott Andrus, a member of Anchor Church, Albuquerque, recently received the Albuquerque Fire Department’s Citizen Life Saver Award. The award recognized his effort to save a man’s life following a motorcycle accident. At the scene, Andrus had used skills he had learned at church.
Last April, Anchor Church hosted a two-hour Albuquerque Fire and Rescue life-saving training called “Stop the Bleed.” The department offers the training for free to local schools, businesses and organizations. “It’s super important that people know how to stop bleeds. We see this as just as important as CPR,” Jackie White, AFD Captain told a local television station. Longtime Albuquerque firefighter, Gabe Healey instructed Anchor’s “Stop the Bleed” training. Healey and his wife, Jenna, are active Anchor members.
“The training was intended as a way to bridge and connect people through awareness,” Anchor Church’s pastor, Jared Bridge, said. The exercise also prepared the church’s security volunteers and children’s workers for an emergency.
At the training, Healey asked Andrus to be his test dummy. Andrus saw first-hand how to use the supplies needed in an emergency. Healy also taught participants hands-on CPR, how to dress wounds, and how to apply a tourniquet. Regarding the skills he had learned, Andrus told a KRQE television reporter, “Anybody in public should know it because you just never know.”
Andrus was not looking for recognition the day he was driving home from Santa Fe. His GPS re-routed him off the highway and onto the frontage road. There, he came upon an accident involving a motorcyclist. The cyclist was conscious and breathing, but bleeding badly from an injured leg. Andrus used his “Stop the Bleed” training. He wrapped the man’s leg with a tourniquet and stayed with him until emergency personnel arrived.
Andrus had no idea, two months prior, when he took the training, that he would use those skills to save a person’s life. However, he had prepared ahead for something he hoped never to need: he had purchased a first-aid kit and several tourniquets.
Captain Stephany Perea said during the recognition, “Had this citizen not been there, that individual would not be with us.” Andrus, who is engaged and getting married next month, said he keeps in touch with the motorcyclist and intends to get the two families together.
One afternoon, families gathered to honor the promotion of firefighters and to recognize others for their service in the community. Standing among them was Scott Andrus. Andrus was just a man who decided to take a crash course offered by AFR that taught him life-saving skills.