Shelburne man pays homage to local emergency service providers

September 5, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Mike Baker

A Shelburne resident has paid homage to the local emergency service providers who quite literally saved his life over the summer.

Borys Lenko was relaxing in his home on June 11, watching TV, when he suddenly collapsed after complaining of having some indigestion. With Borys unresponsive, his wife Janet called 911 and ran across the street to the Shelburne Ambulance Station for some additional help.

Unknown to the couple at the time, Borys had suffered a massive heart attack. With emergency services on their way, a guardian angel in the form of their neighbour Cory Trainer, an off-duty West Grey Police Officer, heard a commotion and came to see if he could be of assistance. Mr. Trainer performed CPR for several minutes before paramedics arrived.

From there, Sim Ouellette and Mike Tapley, both Dufferin County paramedics, assumed the role of life savers, providing treatments with the support of the Shelburne Police Department and Shelburne Fire Department. They were able to resuscitate Mr. Lenko, then rushed to get him to Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket for more treatment.

Upon arrival at the hospital, Borys was prepped for a PCI (Percutaneous Coronary Intervention) procedure, whereby a surgeon inserted five stents into affected vessels in Mr. Lenko’s heart. Five days on from that major operation, Borys was discharged and he has been recuperating at home ever since.

Last Thursday, the Lenkos came face-to-face with some of the individuals who helped him on that fateful night, meeting with emergency service providers in an attempt to “give back”. Borys and his wife donated $100 each to both the Southlake Regional Heath, the Headwaters Healthcare Foundation, as well as Special Olympics.

“I can’t thank everyone enough for saving my life. After the surgery at Southlake I was transferred back to Headwaters for follow-up care. All my care has been extraordinary,” Mr. Lenko said.

Research shows that in Canada, up to 45,000 people die from sudden cardiac arrests each year. The survival rate of victims from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is approximately 5 percent.

Referencing the events on July 11, Dufferin EMS Chief Tom Reid commended the hard work of all those involved to help bring about a happy ending for the Lenko family.

“It takes a team. We are very proud of our paramedics, our community first responders and the integration between Southlake Regional Health Centre, Dufferin County Paramedic Service and the Headwaters Health Care Centre, to support cardiac patients,” Mr. Reid stated. “As we move forward with Ontario Health Team, this is more evidence that when we work together as a community, amazing things can happen.”


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