Pa. man becomes lifeguard after being rescued during cardiac arrest

Matteo Iadonisi Image
Wednesday, December 27, 2023
Pa. man becomes lifeguard after being rescued during cardiac arrest
Jim McBride suffered a near-death experience in a hot tub. Now, he works as a lifeguard alongside the teens who saved him at the Springfield YMCA.

SPRINGFIELD, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- It's a place of peace for Jim McBride: the swimming pool area at the Springfield YMCA. It's also where he nearly lost his life one year ago.

The then-67-year-old had recently retired from his full-time job and also gotten married. He had been visiting the pool to train for ocean swims in the summertime.

"Got out of the pool, said goodbye the lifeguards like I normally do, walked into the hot tub room, and like, the rest is history," said McBride.

He had suffered cardiac arrest. And the quick thinking of two recently-hired teenagers is what made the difference.

"I run in there, grabbed him out of the hot tub fully and then started CPR on him because he wasn't breathing," said Peter McMonagle.

McMonagle's friend and coworker, Gabriel DiEmidio, used an automatic external defibrillator (AED) and sounded the emergency alarm.

Fast forward one whole year and Jim McBride is now working as a part-time lifeguard alongside the lifeguards who rescued him.

"We'll be friends forever," he said. "I'll be buying them lunch forever."

To hear more of the story, watch our video above. To learn more about the Springfield YMCA and their commitment to safety, visit their website.

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