LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Paramedics are often the first to arrive in a life-threatening situation, but rarely do they get a chance to meet their patients again.
One Lafayette woman was determined to meet the emergency responders who saved her life after suffering a massive heart attack.
In September of 2021, Joann Trahan collapsed in her home.
Her granddaughter called 911, and the four paramedics who responded changed her life forever.
On Thursday, she was able to truly meet them for the first time and express just how thankful she is.
“You know what I call you? You’re my angels. I say, ‘Thank you, God, that you put all of my angels together that day,'” Joann told the first responders.
“I am truly grateful because without you, I would not be here,” she added.
Four months ago, Joann woke up in the ICU.
Doctors told her paramedics found her unresponsive, not breathing, with no pulse. They intubated her and did CPR until her heart started beating again.
“They are my angels for the rest of my life and for the rest of their lives. They are my angels.” Joann said.
She spent over three weeks in the hospital recovering, eight of those days on a ventilator, but she made it.
She says she’s grateful to the first responders who gave her a second change at life.
“I know how hard it can be. I know how hectic it can be, but don’t give up because we need you. What you do is vital. It’s important,” Joann told the paramedics.
The team who saved Joann included Paramedic Sydney Kate Reeves, Paramedic Julie Overby, EMT Alexis Montgomery, and Paramedic Field Supervisor Andrew Lalonde.
“It was special. We really don’t get to meet a whole lot of people that we help,” Lalonde said. “Just the fact that she was able to reach out to us and to tell us how much she appreciated our work and what we did for her, it makes us feel really good about the things that we do and know that we actually go out there and make a difference.”
Joann believes these paramedics were put in her life for a reason.
She explains she’s also battling stage four cancer and says these four first responders have given her a new hope and a new perspective on life.
“Because of them, they gave so much of themselves that day. Who am I to feel sorry for myself? I can sit back and have a pity party. I refuse to. They didn’t give up on me, so why should I give up on me?” Joann said.
She says she’s now working on completing her bucket list she made while going through her cancer treatment.
The first things she wants to do are go to New York and Paris.