Monday, May 12, 2008


It started as a normal trip to the gym. I was in the last stretch of my workout on the bike and rocking out to a little JT. All of the sudden I hear a loud thud. This has happened once before when I've been at the gym. A lady who thought she was ready to run at a steep incline fell off a treadmill. She had a few scrapes and was cursing out the gym for their unsafe equipment. I assumed this was the same sort of thing as I was turning around but then I heard people start yelling. "Call 911!" "Is anyone a doctor?" I could see a pair of legs between two elliptical machines. My heart dropped. Thank the Lord above that there happened to be a doctor there working out. He was able to do CPR until the paramedics arrived. They were there within a few minutes and continued CPR as they loaded him up in the ambulance. My heart was aching for this poor man. No one should have to die at the gym, that's like dying at work or the DMV. The only comforting thought I have is that since he was older (he appeared to be in his 70s) he was more likely to be there because he enjoyed it. I can't really picture an older person begrudgingly working out. As they were performing CPR, I just kept praying for him and his family.

Besides being so sad about the situation, I am really pissed off at the way some people reacted. From the moment I realized something was wrong I stopped my workout. I am a firm believer of not gawking or crowding. If you can't help then stay back. Yet, I find it unbelievable that some people continued their workout! Not like they didn't hear because their music was too loud, but they turned around saw what was going on and then went back to what they were doing. I just feel like that's so disrespectful. To me it says, "Oh that sucks that you might be dying but I've really gotta stay at my target heart rate."

What was even more insane was that a few of these people who continued their workout knew the guy. There are a handful of older men who work out at my gym. I overheard this conversation between two of them:
Guy A: Hey is he ok?
Guy B: I don't know, they are still performing CPR.
Guy A: Wow really? Is it anybody we know?
Guy B: Yeah it's Joe.
Guy A: Joe? You don't say.
Guy A then goes back to reading his book and walking on the treadmill.
At that point I lost it. It doesn't matter if he is only an acquaintance. You could at least pause your workout until they take him out of the building. I don't know if he heard me but I made sure to say loudly enough what a piece of crap I thought he was. I didn't even know the man and I was so upset, how can you not even flinch when someone you know is laying on the floor unconscious.

Thankfully there were people who people who jumped in to help out. There was the doctor who performed CPR and people who helped move equipment and clear a path for the stretcher. There was also a handful of people who stopped what they were doing while this was going on.

After they took him away, I left the gym. I couldn't just go back to my workout like nothing had happened. I got in my car and cried. I cried for this man and his family and I cried for the disregard some people have for human life. I am so sad, I just pray that they were able to save him. I tried looking on the internet, hoping maybe the OC register had a story about it so I could find out if he is ok but I couldn't find anything. I'm going to the gym tonight so hopefully they will know.


Wow! That's insane! It's disgusting how people are so insincere! It's comforting to know that there are still "humans" out there with real emotions that will stop what they are doing to help!

i think you summed it up nicely. i'm sorry you had to be there and witness the situation, but at least there were others, like you, who were respectful of it all. so very sad :(

People are so rude. I hope he is ok.

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