Friends save Covington teen using CPR



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Posted on May 20, 2011 at 11:07 PM

Updated Monday, May 23 at 3:31 PM

COVINGTON, Wash -- A Covington teenager suffered a heart attack in the woods last Monday. His friends, using CPR and some quick thinking, saved his life.

Brandon Hopper collapsed near Greenwater on Monday, and after more than 2 hours of CPR, he's made a miraculous recovery.
Kierstyn Frederick and Austin Bourbonnie say they both learned CPR in school. Never did they think they'd need it to save their friends life.
"Honestly, I think I did what any old friend should do,” says Bourbonnie.  "As soon as everything happened, everything that I remember learning started clicking in,” says Frederick. “It was a natural reaction I had to do it.”
19 year old Hopper suffers from a genetic heart condition but had never gone into cardiac arrest before Monday.  The three friends were hiking in the woods taking pictures of elk when Hooper fell to the ground.  He wasn't breathing.
"He's not responding to me he's not responding to any of us, and I didn't know what to think. I was freaking out,” says Frederick,
"I'm thinking I might have held my best friend in my arms for the last time,” says Bourbonnie. He started CPR while Frederick went to flag down a car since their cell phones had no reception.
They continued breaths and chest compressions for 25 minutes until paramedics arrived and took over.
"I can't stop appreciating how many right things happened,” says Brandon’s mom, Michelle Hooper.
His parents say, on the way to Harborview, Hopper got more than 2 hours of CPR and shocked with the defibrillator 8 times.
"They're always going to be on our Christmas card list, and they're going to be friends of our family forever,” says Troy Hopper, Brandon’s father, of the two friends.
The Covington teenager isn't out of the woods yet, but doctors removed his breathing tube today and he's alert and talking.
"Seeing Brandon in the hospital now, I'm really happy he's still here,” says Frederick.
She took CPR in high school. Bourbonnie says he flunked it in 7th grade, but between the two of them, they knew enough to save their friend's life.
Hopper's parents say doctors tell them the longest documented case where a person has received CPR and made a full recovery was 96 minutes. They’re still checking a few details, but if he makes a full recovery it could be a record.