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WCCO Features Troop 524 Lifesavers

John Lauritsen, WCCO 4 News

October 21, 2014


A group of people were honored tonight for saving the life of a Coon Rapids man.  And their rescue was caught on tape.  In July Tim Buck went into Cardiac Arrest while dancing with his wife at a concert at the Coon Rapids Dam.  Suddenly he collapsed and his heart stopped beating.  John Lauritsen shows us there were no shortage of hereos who jumped right in to give Tim a second chance at life.


"I started to do a lot of dancing, I got into it big time" said Tim.  It's not hard to pick out Tim Buck in this crowd.  The guy in the black hat dancing with his wife Fatima.  In a matter of seconds this happy occasion would turn into a lifesaving mission.  


Coon Rapids Outstanding Citizen Award Winners

Kyle Palzer Troop 524 Communications Coordinator

October 21, 2014


Troop 524 adult leaders Mark Snell and Jennifer Fritz were receognized for their heroic lifesaving actions on July 31st 2014 at the Coon Rapids Dam.  Mark and Jennifer preformed hands-only CPR on Tim Buck after he suffered a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA).  They did so until an AED arrived on the scene.


The two met Tim at a special event at the Coon Rapids City Hall on October 21, 2014.  This was followed by an official presentation of the awards by the Coon Rapids Mayor Tim Howe.  Nearly two dozen Troop 524 scouts and adults atteneded the presentation.  Media from CTN News and WCCO were also present for the event.   


Prepared. For Life. Has a Whole NEW Meaning!

Kyle Palzer Troop 524 Communications Coordinator

June 13, 2013


Boy Scout Troop 524 has been preparing young men for almost 50 years for leadership, service, learning, education, and adventure.  These qualities culminate into preparing them for life, and everything life throws their way, including the unexpected.


On Monday June 10, Troop 524 authorized the purchase of a discounted Automated External Defibrillator (AED) to be used in our troop trailer.  An AED is intended for use when someone undergoes a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) which is a condition in which the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating. If this happens, blood stops flowing to the brain and other vital organs.  It has been proven that using an AED on a victim within the first two minutes, combined with chest compressions can increase survival rates by 60%!


Since Troop 524 often camps in some remote places, like many scout troops, having access to an AED can greatly improve the time we can now get an AED onto a victim, versus waiting for medical help to arrive.  Troop 524 also had all of our adult and youth members trained in how to use an AED back in March 2013 with the help of the Coon Rapids Heart Safe Community initiative, which is working to turn Coon Rapids into a certified American Heart Association Heart Safe Community.  This designation requires a certain number of residents trained, and a certain number of AED's placed in businesses within the community.


Therefore, Prepared. For Life. is more than just a slogan referring to training young men, but now with an AED onboard our trailer truly is PREPARED. FOR LIFE!

Scout Troop Joins Heart Safe Campaign
  Date: 03/06/13

  by Peter Bodley Managing Editor ABC Newspapers

A Coon Rapids Boy Scout troop has joined the efforts of the Coon Rapids Police Department to have Coon Rapids certified as an American Heart Association Heart Safe Community.

Boy Scout Troop 524 out of Church of the Epiphany hosted a training session Feb. 25 in the use of CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation) and AED (automated external defibrillators) operation for both its Scouts and adult leaders.

And in doing so the troop became the first community organization to have this life saving training through the heart safe community project.

According to Kyle Palzer, Boy Scout Troop 524 communications coordinator and Heart Safe Community outreach coordinator, there were 45 Scouts and 30 adult leaders who took the training session.

“Boy Scout Troop 524 will be the first Scouting unit in the city to become trained,” Palzer said.  “Scouts and adults received personal hands-on training of both AED operation and CPR.”

According to Palzer, the Scout troop decided it wanted to be involved in the training after hearing and talking about the heart safe community project.

The Scouts have had some training in CPR in the past, but “nothing hands on like this” involving both CPR and AED, Palzer said.  “They are very excited and enthusiastic,” he said.  There are two AED machines at Epiphany Church and School, but this training will enable Scouts to respond in a sudden cardiac arrest situation no matter where they are before emergency services arrive, Palzer said.

The training in the Epiphany Cafeteria was led by Allina Paramedic Paul Mendoza, a longtime Coon Rapids resident, and Officer Bryan Platz, who is spearheading the police department’s heart safe community project.  They were joined as trainers by two other police officers, Dan Freiberg and Briana Johnson, Fire Inspector Nick House from the Coon Rapids Fire Department and Deb McPeck, an Anoka-Hennepin School District 11.

                                                                                                    Before breaking up into small groups to perform CPR and AED procedures on                

                                                                                                    mannequins, the Scouts heard a presentation and demonstration from Mendoza on

                                                                                                    what to do in the event of sudden cardiac arrest situation.  They learned about what is  

                                                                                                    called the chain of survival including recognizing heart attack symptoms and sudden

                                                                                                    cardiac arrest signs plus the treatment protocol using both CPR and AEDs.  According

                                                                                                    to Mendoza, chest compressions at a rate of 100 compressions a minute should be

                                                                                                    started before the arrival of the AED.  With the help of House, Mendoza showed the

                                                                                                    Scouts how the electrodes from the AED should be attached to the victim’s body and

                                                                                                    how to follow the voice prompts from the AED.  A person suffering sudden cardiac

                                                                                                    arrest is clinically dead, but the person has not flat-lined because the monitor will still

                                                                                                    show a wavy line rather like a four-year-old using a crayon, Mendoza said.  “The first

                                                                                                    two minutes are critical,” he said. “There are big odds you can save them.”  Indeed, in

                                                                                                    his experience as a paramedic, Mendoza said a patient in sudden cardiac arrest will  

                                                                                                    wake up after the first AED shock and start talking as if nothing had happened.

                                                                                                    There are two types of AED, one that transmits the shock automatically and the other

                                                                                                    that requires the operator to push a red button on the machine, he said.  The danger

                                                                                                    in that is the operator might hesitate, which is why Mendoza said he prefers the

                                                                                                    automatic AED.  Nor can the AED shock hurt the person in sudden cardiac arrest, he

                                                                                                    said.  “It’s OK to use an AED on a child under the age of 18, even the age of one,”                  

                                                                                                    Mendoza said.  And Platz told the Scouts that they cannot get into trouble for using  

                                                                                                    CPR and an AED.  “You are helping to save a life,” Platz said.

According to Platz, One Beat CPR has donated two AEDs to the police department to be used in its heart safe community training program.

All 20 of the city’s police squad cars are now equipped with an AED, so are all the vehicles used by the fire department.  To become a heart safe community, there are certain criteria that have to be met, including having 17 AEDs placed in Coon Rapids businesses, having a specific number of people training in CPR and AED use, both of which are based on population, and scheduling public events, Platz said.

Besides the training session with the Troop 524 Scouts, all staff at Epiphany Church/School, clergy and teachers included, will be trained in CPR and the AED process, he said.  And Platz is working with Life Time Fitness to offer CPR/AED training to its customers, as well as with Broadway Pizza for staff training.  All these training sessions are free of charge to community groups and businesses, Platz said.  The goal is not only to provide the training, but get AEDs located in public places, including businesses in the community, according to Platz.  The retail cost of an AED is about $2,400, said Coon Rapids Police Chief Brad Wise.

“Police and fire respond to hundreds of cardiac emergencies a year in retail establishments and in the event of sudden cardiac arrest, hands-on CPR and the use of an AED increases a person’s survival rate to about 85 percent in the first two minutes,” Platz said. If members of the community are trained in CPR and the use of an AED, this will provide critical minutes for survival of victims until the arrival of emergency services, according to Platz.

Boy Scout Troop 524, which was formed in 1964 and will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in November 2014, currently has over 80 youth members.

According to the American Heart Association Heart Safe Community brochure, designation as a heart safe community “makes the community a safer place to live, work and play by being prepared to reduce the number of deaths and disabilities associated with sudden cardiac arrest.”

Coon Rapids Police Officer Briana Johnson (left) watches as Troop 524 Boy Scouts Lawrence Hapka and Eli Andrzejek (far right) practice CPR and AED use on a mannequin.

Local Boy Scouts Learn How to Use AEDs

Steve Ericson CTN News Anchor

March 1, 2013

The push to make Coon Rapids a Heart Safe Community took a big step forward this week, with the first public AED training class.  Dozens of Boy Scouts from Troop 524, along with their parents, took part in a training session Monday night at Epiphany School.  They learned what to do if someone goes into sudden Cardiac Arrest and even got hands on training at stations set up in the school cafeteria.  Scout leaders decided to get involved after hearing about the Heart Safe Community Initiative.  “It speaks volumes for what the Boy Scout program does.  We tell our kids one of our mottos is to Be Prepared and I think it’s a way for these scouts to start to be prepared for all kinds of situations, and we’re really glad to step on board and we’re hoping more people join the movement as well” said Kyle Palzer an adult volunteer for the Troop.  Troop 524 hopes other scout groups in the city also get the AED training.  To schedule a free training session for your group or business call Paul Mendoza at 612-325-3465 we also have a link to the Coon Rapids Heart Safe Community Facebook group on our website at

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