Taylor Hospital Nurse Saves Woman’s Life While on Vacation at Disney World
Last November, Judith and Fred Horowitz were in Disney World, celebrating Fred’s 70th birthday with their children and grandchildren, when the unthinkable happened: Judy had a heart attack and collapsed.
Taylor Hospital nurse Julie Orr was heading back to the hotel after dinner with her own family when she saw Horowitz fall. “At first, I thought it was a child playing, but I noticed she didn’t get up so I ran toward her and realized it was a woman. I took her pulse and it was unresponsive. That’s when I started to administer CPR and compressions,” says Orr, who has been a nurse for 12 years. “It was a surreal situation but you just get into the zone and you do what needs to be done.”
After some time, another nurse emerged from the crowd and helped Orr with the CPR while they waited for emergency services to arrive. They used an automated external defibrillator until Horowitz was revived.
“I heard one of the nurses say, ‘I’ve got a pulse’ and I looked down and she was breathing. It was a miracle,” Fred Horowitz says.
Judith Horowitz was then driven to the hospital and later Medevac-ed to another facility where a stent was put in her artery.
“The hospital told us that if I hadn’t been there, she might not have made it,” Orr says. “The quick action was critical to keeping her alive. It just makes you want to hug your family and keep them close, because you never know what can happen.”
After receiving cardiac rehabilitation and a follow-up procedure, Horowitz is now doing well back at home in Lebanon, Pa. In December, Fred Horowitz wrote the hospital a letter and sent a donation to honor the work of the nursing staff. Orr and the Horowitz family have remained in touch over the past several months.
“I don’t feel like a hero, but I feel that I was blessed to be there in the right moment,” Orr says.
Fred Horowitz begs to differ. “Nurses are the unsung heroes of the health care system. That two good Samaritans happened to be there and were willing to use their training and save a person’s life is truly a miracle. To me, they are angels.”
Fred and Judith Horowitz.