EMSA: OKC Man Clinically Dead Survives, Baffles Doctors

Tuesday, June 10th 2014, 9:32 pm
By: News 9

His heart stopped pumping; he wasn't breathing. Doctors told family members he wouldn't survive.

On Tuesday, an Oklahoma City man credited a call to 911, CPR and EMSA's fast response for saving his life. Officials said Darrell Brown, 26, was clinically dead after his heart stopped beating on March 25. Dozens of chest compressions and 85 defibrillator shocks saved his life, according to EMSA.

"He's turning purple," Darrell Brown's fiancée Jessica Schofield said during a 911 call. "I really need somebody really fast."

A 911 operator instructed Schofield on how to give Darrell Brown CPR while EMSA and firefighters were rushing to the couple's Southwest Side home. Doctors told the family a rare heart condition called takotsubo cardiomyopathy was to blame.

The condition kept Darrell Brown, the father of a 9-month-old baby boy, in the intensive care unit for more than a week. For nine days, Schofield said doctors told her that her fiancée would not survive.

"How do I explain his dad not being here when [my child] asks me, where's my daddy," said Schofield with tears in her eyes.

Two and a half months after the ordeal, Darrell Brown is doing much better. With their loved one out of the hospital, family members were anxious to say thank you to the men they call their heroes –- EMSA medics.

Taking a break from their shift Tuesday afternoon, two of EMSA's finest stopped by the family's home for a visit. The occasion marked the first reunion since the incident.

"He was dead," paramedic Ryan Zweygardt said. Even the doctors say he should not have lived."

Zweygardt and his ambulance partner, EMT Gene Brown, said Darrell Brown's satisfactory results and the family's gratitude create the best feeling in the world. Darrell Brown is still battling memory issues stemming from the incident.

He's working to overcome his illness with a pacemaker, doctor visits and faith.