From an early age, we’re taught to take our doctor’s advice. But while physicians are trained professionals, they’re also human—and all humans make mistakes. The stakes are higher for medical professionals, though, and the mistakes they make can lead to grave results.
A father from Ukraine recently discovered this after his daughter fell unconscious in the family pool. Paramedics on the scene told him she wasn’t going to survive, but that prognosis seemed odd him—so he boldly took matters into his own hands.
Whenever we find ourselves at a doctor’s office or in a medical emergency, we generally trust that the staff is giving us correct information. However, doctors and nurses are only human, and they too can make mistakes from time to time. One father from Ukraine named Ruslan Odonec found this out the hard way.
Ruslan and his wife, Anastasia, had planned a get-together on New Year’s Eve with their friends and family. Ruslan was excited that his kids, five-year-old Radomir and three-year-old Alesya (pictured), were old enough to join in the fun.
The family frequently threw large parties for holidays, and their home was the perfect place to entertain so many people. It offered plenty of amenities, including an indoor pool so guests could go for a swim at any time of the year!
The guests arrived early in the afternoon so they could enjoy each other’s company for the whole day. The drinks were flowing, and food was delicious, and everyone was ready to ring in the New Year.
New Year’s Eve parties were always the best; everyone was excited to take on the year to come and make it a memorable time. Ruslan was thrilled the party was turning out to be such a success.
Radomir and Alesya scurried off to play with an older cousin. As the night went on, Ruslan noticed the home became much quieter than usual. Alesya tended to be the loudest of their children, but she wasn’t causing any commotion…
The last place where Ruslan had seen his kids and niece was in Alesya’s bedroom. He went upstairs to check on them, though he was starting to feel slightly concerned. He opened up the door, but Alesya’s room was completely empty. Where could they have gone?
He started asking some of the guests if they’d seen the kids. One person said they thought they’d seen them heading toward the indoor pool. Ruslan’s heart dropped. He prayed none of them had gone in the water without supervision.
The father ran toward the indoor pool, and as soon he got there made a horrifying discovery—and every parent’s worst nightmare: Alesya’s lifeless body was floating in the water! Ruslan screamed to the other guests for help before diving into the water.
Ruslan pulled Alesya’s body from the water, but she wasn’t breathing. All of the guests who’d gathered in the pool room stared in horror while the distraught father placed his child on the floor while his parents dialed 9-1-1.
In the meantime, Ruslan attempted to perform CPR on his daughter. He also tried administering mouth-to-mouth, but nothing was working. He knew every minute that passed was one minute closer to losing Alesya.
Ruslan’s wife, Anastasia, was understandably horrified when she came downstairs to see her husband performing CPR on their young daughter. She immediately fainted in shock. Ten minutes later, the paramedics finally arrived and began trying to revive the child.
Eventually, they declared the young girl dead. But Ruslan was unwilling to accept this information. He bent over and began attempting to resuscitate his daughter again. One of paramedics actually told him to stop “torturing the dead body,” but the father was not about to lose his little girl.
Miraculously, Alesya’s heart started beating and she began breathing again! At that point, it had been 40 minutes since Ruslan pulled her out of the pool. Unfortunately, she slipped into a coma; the stunned paramedics rushed Alesya to a nearby hospital.
Doctors and specialists spent the next several days intensely treating the young girl. She was in critical condition, but at least she was alive. All Ruslan and Anastasia could do was pray their daughter would pull through.
Incredibly, one morning, out of the blue, Alesya’s condition stabilized! Ruslan and Anastasia couldn’t believe their luck. Alesya was brought to a hospital in Moscow to continue treatment.
Two weeks after arriving in Moscow, Alesya woke up! However, she was unable to speak, see, or move. Gradually, throughout the next few weeks, Alesya received treatment and continued to get better and was able to see and take small steps.
It took several months of recovery, but Alesya completely pulled through. Once the media got hold of the story, Ruslan became a national hero. News outlets all over shared his heroic deed…
When reporters asked about Alesya’s condition, Ruslan was thrilled to announce she was doing well—although he was frustrated the paramedics gave up so quickly. If he’d believed their initial assessment of her condition, his sweet young daughter wouldn’t be alive and well today.
Ruslan and Anastasia were thankful the paramedics’ mistake didn’t take their daughter’s life away. Had Ruslan not continued trying to save his daughter’s life, he and his wife would have lost her. However, his sheer will and determination paid off—and his baby girl was saved.
Wow, Ruslan is truly a hero! There’s nothing that can stop a father’s intuition—even if it means going against a trained paramedic. Thank goodness he refused to give up on his daughter.
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