On Sunday morning, a man in his 50s was shot in Baka El Garbiya, a city in Northern Israel. The man suffered from massive bleeding and concerned bystanders called for emergency medical services.

Fortunately, Mustafa Abu Bakar, a United Hatzalah EMT volunteer, was in the vicinity when his proximity alert went off, notifying him about a wounded man nearby. Mustafa rushed to the scene in his car and found another United Hatzalah volunteer EMT, Mohamad Laham, already there. Together, they located the victim, who was a well-known lawyer in the village. The man had two bullets in his back and one in his left foot. Mustafa and Mohamad quickly administered first aid, bandaging the wounded areas and stopping the bleeding. Soon after, a mobile intensive care ambulance arrived.

Mustafa and Mohamad assisted the paramedics and helped to anesthetize the man before getting him on a stretcher and into the ambulance. The victim was then transferred to a nearby medical center for further treatment.

After the incident, Mustafa expressed his gratitude for becoming an EMT: “When I began to train as an EMT I discovered a new world that I knew little about. Before my training, I had struggled to find answers to my son’s medical problems. I was constantly running from doctor to doctor trying to figure out what was wrong with him. When I met the chapter head of United Hatzalah in Baka El Garbiya, Mohamad Abo Toame, he suggested I take an EMT training course and this opened my eyes to the world of emergency medical services. After I took the course, I was able to help my son at home in a lot of cases and I didn’t have to go to the doctor nearly as much. It changed my life.”

Making reference to today’s incident Mustafa added, “Being an EMT and being able to help my own son, caused me to want to help others as well in their times of need. Whenever incidents happen, like the shooting today where I am able to respond and treat a person and save their lives, I realize once again just how satisfying and fulfilling an experience it is to help others.’’

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