Member Stories

Nextdoor Reunites St. Petersburg Neighbor with Woman Who Saved His Life

Written by Anne Dreshfield

This holiday season, one St. Petersburg man had more to celebrate than most.

Over the summer, Happy Rideout was walking his dog when he went into sudden cardiac arrest. A neighbor, Joseph, was working nearby and saw him fall to the ground. He ran out into the street to help, and was joined by a mailman who was working nearby.

“I would hope someone would do the same thing for me,” he said.

“There are no words to express what it means.”
At the same time, someone else happened to drive by – Julie, a nurse at a local children’s hospital. Despite her kids being in the car, she knew she had to help. She helped administer CPR correctly until emergency services arrived. After Happy was in the ambulance, Julie went back to her children and took them home.

Thankfully, Happy survived. During his recovery, he was told about the strangers who jumped in to save his life, but no one knew the identity of the nurse who had stepped in. Happy took to Nextdoor to see if he could solve the mystery.

“A Good Samaritan saw me go down and started CPR the best he knew how without training,” he wrote on his neighborhood’s Nextdoor website. “A women driving by in a Buick SUV saw this and stopped. She knew what to do and had him call 911 while she correctly performed CPR on me until the EMTs arrived. All we know is she had young kids in her car and was a petite person. Please, if you are this Angel or know someone it could be, please contact me. I want to thank her for saving me. I have made a full recovery. Thank you so much. God Bless and Merry Christmas.”

It didn’t take long for neighbors to connect the dots. Over Christmas weekend, the two reunited.

“He was completely blue, with no color, but I knew when I was doing compressions he had color coming back to his face,” Julie said of the eventful day. “We worked as a team.”

Thanks to three strangers, that team saved a man’s life. Happy says he’ll never forget them.

“I survived. I’m alive today just because they did that,” he says. “There are no words to express what it means.”


Originally reported by FOX Tampa.

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