On Thursday evening during the swearing-in ceremony of the Kfir Brigade at the Kotel, a man spontaneously collapsed to the floor.  

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Tair Aviani Carmi whose son was participating in the swearing-in ceremony, was in the crowd and standing just a few meters away from the man when he collapsed. Carmi is a United Hatzalah volunteer EMT from the town of Baram in the Northern Galilee. She began calling for help and reported it to United Hatzalah’s Dispatch and Command Center. The dispatcher immediately dispatched three other volunteers to the scene.

“I began treating the man who was the grandfather of one of the other soldiers in the ceremony.

It was surreal. Just as the man’s grandson screamed “I swear” he had no idea that his grandfather was undergoing CPR at that very moment,” Carmi said.  

Carmi began CPR treatment as other volunteers from the crowd and the area began to arrive. A defibrillator was attached to the man’s chest and three shocks were administered. The CPR was successful and the man’s pulse returned. He was then transported to the hospital via ambulance.

“It was very meaningful to me to be able to help save this man’s life. Hopefully, he will make a full recovery so that he can continue to celebrate with his grandson.”

After the immediate threat was over Carmi turned her attention to the traumatized family of the man to help offer them support as they had witnessed the entire incident.  

“I helped provide emotional support for the family, the man’s children and other grandchildren who came for the ceremony who saw the whole situation. They were in hysterics and I applied the knowledge that I learned from our Psychotrauma training to help calm the family and give them the emotional support that they needed at the time,” Carmi said. It was her second successful CPR this week.

Yosef Deshet who works in Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh was one of the United Hatzalah volunteers who responded to the emergency. He raced downstairs from the Yeshiva which overlooks the Kotel plaza and grabbed the EMS kit located in the plaza. Deshet rushed over to where Aviani was treating the man who had collapsed.

“I rushed over and immediately began giving the man oxygen and assisted breathing while Aviani was doing the rest. I had no idea where she came from, I didn’t even know who she was, but we worked together like a well-oiled team. Other responders began to arrive and join our efforts. Together we proceeded to do a full CPR on the man including three shocks from a defibrillator. The man’s pulse returned and we put him on an ambulance and sent him off to the hospital. He was still receiving assisted breathing but his pulse was back and from what we saw his chances looked very positive.”