Date: Wednesday Apr. 18, 2012 11:21 PM ET
When one of his students fell to the floor during gym class, Weston Collegiate Institute teacher Jeff Crewe jumped into action, and he is now being credited with saving the young man’s life.
Ajethan Ramachandranathan, 18, collapsed Friday morning in the middle of the gym, Crewe recalled.
He was having a heart attack.
“He was lying on the floor. He wasn’t conscious,” said Crewe. “I was still talking to him, trying to keep him calm and just encouraging him to breathe.”
Crewe began CPR and used a defibrillator in the school to zap Ramachandranathan’s heart, just after the teen stopped breathing.
“If he didn’t get that shock on him immediately, he might not have been there, so this machine definitely saved his life,” said Crewe, holding the device he used on Friday.
Ramachandranathan, an active teen who is on the school basketball team, is now recovering in hospital where he is in good spirits.
He doesn’t remember much about the ordeal.
“I felt nothing coming on,” Ramachandranathan recalled from his hospital bed. “It was just a sudden collapse, and then my heart stopped.”
He does, however, want to thank his favourite teacher, saying Crewe should get an award for his actions.
“He saved my live,” Ramachandranathan said. “He went above and beyond what a normal gym teacher would have done.”
Ramachandranathan’s younger brother, Rubaasan Ramachandranathan, is also thanking Crewe for his actions.
“I think it was really heroic of him,” he said. “‘Cause I know a lot of teachers would have just waited for the ambulance to come, but he took measures into his own hands and saved his life.”
Crewe is taking a humble approach to his actions, saying it was the defibrillator that should be credited for saving Ramachandranathan.
“It was incredible to see how fast he changed after the shock,” Crewe said.
By Wednesday, Ramachandranathan was doing well.
He will be sent to Toronto General Hospital to see if he needs to have surgery to install a pacemaker.
Thanks to Crewe’s actions, Ramachandranathan has a bright future ahead. The teen has already been accepted to three different universities where he hopes to study biology.
With files from CTV Toronto’s Collin D’Mello