Lloyd Zerk was airlifted from Muckadilla to Roma, and then on to Toowoomba after suffering a cardiac arrest.
Lloyd Zerk was airlifted from Muckadilla to Roma, and then on to Toowoomba after suffering a cardiac arrest. Bev Lacey

Defibrillator saves Muckadilla veteran

A MUCKADILLA veteran who had travelled from Toowoomba to attend the town's Remembrance Day service remains in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest at the event.

Lloyd Zerk had just marched alongside fellow service men and women, whose names had been included on Muckadilla's newly dedicated memorial, when he collapsed at the conclusion of the procession.

Many bystanders rushed to his aid, and locals Janelle Stanford, Dr Alwyn Rapasta, Shannon Crocker and Phil Young performed CPR before Roxanne Wichalz retrieved a defibrillator from her vehicle.

It was only by chance that the defibrillator was in Ms Wichalz's car, and the group was able to return Mr Zerk's heart to a normal rhythm by the time two ambulances and the LifeFlight helicopter had arrived from Roma.

Initially Mr Zerk was airlifted from the nearby Muckadilla Rifle Club back to Roma Hospital.

Doctors later determined he was in a stable condition, but needed further testing at Toowoomba Hospital, where he was flown later in the evening by LifeFlight.

The Zerk family have since reported back that he is 'cheerful and comfortable' in Toowoomba, while staff are continuing to look after him.

Back in the Maranoa, Councillor Janelle Stanford has since promised a defibrillator machine for the township of Muckadilla, in the case of another medical emergency like this one.

It will follow the recent donation of AEDs to Mungallala, Mitchell, Amby and Dunkeld.


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