Indiana Machinist Saves Heart Attack Victim

A supervisor at Union Electric Steel Corp. in Valparaiso, IN is alive today thanks to the quick thinking of an IAM member who applied emergency first aid skills when the supervisor suffered a sudden cardiac arrest.

Jason Jerz, a 15-year member of Local 1227 in Valparaiso, IL began Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), activated the E.M.S. system at the plant and applied the Automatic Electronic Defibulator (AED) when the supervisor collapsed at work.

Jerz learned his skills while volunteering for the Morgan Township Volunteer Fire Department, where he has served for 10 years and is currently a Captain. The IAM and Union Electric Steel maintain a joint Safety and Health Committee that provides and maintains the equipment that Jerz used in the crisis. Without immediate treatment, more than 90 percent of sudden cardiac arrest victims die before reaching the hospital.

“Jason did a fantastic job of reacting to this situation, applying his life saving skills and extending the life of the supervisor before EMS arrived,” said Midwest Territory GVP Phil Gruber. “It’s a genuine honor to have such people in our union.”

The supervisor was transported to the hospital where he regained consciousness and is expected to make a full recovery.