HEALTH

Golf fan saved from heart attack speaks of recovery

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The man who had a heart attack at the U.S. Open tournament Thursday spoke exclusively to ABC7 about his life-threatening ordeal.

Ryan Codd had a heart attack at the U.S. Open.

Ryan Codd was saved by the quick actions of first responders on the scene, including two police officers, paramedics said. Codd, of Westminster, Md., says he felt chest pains near the 11th Fairway. He is still in intensive care at Suburban Hospital.

"I guess I'm hanging in there now, and I just got to get better here, I don't have my dad around, I have to take care of things,” the 29-year-old said in a telephone interview.

Codd’s father died from a brain tumor last fall. Ever since then, his mother says Ryan has taken the role of man of the house. She believes he was meant to be at the golf course Thursday.

"God placed him here and those people there... He normally works around our farm, and he would be here,” Joyce Codd said.

Joyce Codd went back to the Congressional Country Club Friday to thank the men and women who helped saved her son's life.

She embraced Montgomery county police officer Deirdre Sugrue, one of two police officers who rushed to help Codd’s son when he collapsed near the golf course.

Ryan Codd suffered a heart attack and was in and out of consciousness. "He was lying flat on his back, grasping for breath,” said Maryland state trooper Paul Zimmerman.

Sugrue and Zimmerman were just feet away and they immediately began CPR and chest compressions.

"You think about your on family,” Sugrue said of jumping to the man’s aid.

“He was still breathing... He started turning blue," she recalls.

Mother thanked first responders

Paramedics arrived at the scene soon after and rushed Ryan Codd to a hospital. The 29-year-old suffers from an enlarged heart.

"His physical heart is weak... His spiritual heart is huge,” said his mother Joyce, a Mt. Airy resident.

Paramedics say the first five minutes on the Greens were crucial. "That's what saved him... Less than one percent (of victims of the same type of cardiac arrest) make it,” said Mike Macko of the Montgomery county emergency response.

Sugrue, a 31-year-veteran of the Montgomgery County police force, said helping Codd was what she was “supposed to be doing.” “Certainly this wasn't anything I was doing alone,” she said.

Defending golf champion Graeme McDowell was getting ready to play the hole at Congressional Country Club when he noticed the commotion.

"You're out there trying to do your best, but it certainly puts golf in perspective when you see someone obviously fighting for their life,” McDowell said at a news conference Thursday.

Ryan Codd will have a defibrillator surgically implanted on Monday and could need a heart transplant in the future.

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