Dr. Yaron Timor (PhD.) came across a United Hatzalah booth on the campus where he taught and the experience changed his life. “I feel blessed that I have the opportunity to help people and save lives,” said Timor regarding his work with United Hatzalah. For Timor saving lives has turned into an everyday routine, but he is still able to recognize the special quality and uniqueness of those who are given the responsibility and opportunity to swoop in for the rescue multiple times per day. For Timor, everything began as a matter of circumstance. “I am truly blessed, I feel that I have won the lottery, that is how blessed I am.”
Dr. Timor (PhD.) acts as the Vice Dean of the school of Business Administration for the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) in Herzliya. His story with United Hatzalah began two years ago when he came across an information booth for the Volunteer EMS organization of United Hatzalah on campus. “One day I was simply walking to the cafeteria when I came across some volunteers demonstrating how to give CPR on a dummy that was placed on the grass. I asked one of the volunteer demonstrators what was going on and he explained to me that they were holding a demonstrative lesson on behalf of United Hatzalah. At that very moment the head of the local branch of United Hatzalah told me ‘you’ll be joining us,’ and that is exactly what happened.”
Later that day Timor looked up the organization online and immediately wanted to become a part of it. “I said to myself, as I was reading their website, that to save a life is certainly not a given. I joined a paramedic course, and the rest is history.”
Timor decided that he wanted to become part of the organization. Following his successful completion of the EMT course, which lasted almost a year, he became one of the most active volunteers in the organization who has helped rescue and treat countless injured and sick people since then. Timor wanted to join the Ambucycle unit of United Hatzalah and therefore went and took out a driver’s license for a motorcycle. “The way in which I became an ambucycle driver is really one of the most shocking things that occurred to me in my life,” Timor said. “If someone would have asked me just a few years ago would I ever ride a motorcycle one day, I would have laughed at the person who asked me. I never let my kids ride a motorcycle.”
What changed for Timor was the need for speed when dealing with emergency situations. “I used to arrive at the scene of an emergency in my personal car and I sort of felt similar to Moses who never quite achieved arriving in the holy land. Many times I got stuck in a traffic jam and I was unable to get to the scene of the emergency at all. It was very dissuading. One day the Director of the organization asked me how I was at handling a motorcycle. I told him that I would give him an answer in a month’s time. That is when I went out and got a motorcycle license. My kids didn’t even know. Only after I got the license did I send them a picture of myself on a motorcycle.”
According to Timor’s report, there is no accounting for the added value, versatility and usefulness that the ambucycle provides vs. a medic attempting to arrive via a private car. “It completely changed my ability to arrive at the scene of an emergency. I was able to arrive much faster and it allowed me t do my job much more efficiently. It simply saves lives.”
Timor also volunteers with the “give honor” project that United Hatzalah runs which is aimed at helping the elderly throughout Israel. The program pairs up an elderly person, often a holocaust survivor, with a member of United Hatzalah’s volunteer EMS team. The EMS volunteer monitors the health of the elderly individual, providing them with free medical check ups and helping them maintain a strong connection to society. Dr. Timor meets Christina, a holocaust survivor aged 90 once a week. The connection which the two have built, has long ago exceeded that of the mandatory volunteer checkups.
“I also volunteer at an emergency medical clinic that has been set up for African refugees at the central bus station in Tel Aviv,” Timor added. “My first call occurred at the bus station. I am not fromt hat part of the city, but I heard a call go out for an emergency on Salma street which is near the bus station. I jumped on my ambucycle and arrived at the scene in under three minutes. Citizens in the area were surrounding an unconscious man and giving him heart massages, something which is very important to do early on and are very useful to saving a person’s life.
Timor was the first EMT on scene. He gave the unconscious individual CPR and then shocked him with the portable defibrillator that all United Hatzalah EMTs carry and thus was able to bring the man back to consciousness before he was evacuated to the hospital on an emergency services ambulance. The man, who is a father of three called Dr. Timor his angel, and Dr. Timor calls the man by the same name. “For two years the man I saved has been calling me that. I told him not to call me that if he wants to stay good friends with me,” joked Timor. Timor and the rescued victim, Avi, meet up once every two months. “It has developed into a friendship for life” Timor added.
Timor said that while he sounds excited when he talks about his activities with United Hatzalah, there are in actuality, “no words to describe what working with the organization is like. I have an endless supply of emotionally moving stories now, but the most important thing is what I said before. I feel simply blessed to have the opportunity to help others and save people’s live.”