‘They were like my angels’: Sandston man thanks strangers who saved his life in library

Local News

"I'll be truly humbled and blessed for the rest of my life for what they did."

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Sandston man is feeling grateful after he said strangers at a Henrico County Public Library saved his life.

Randy Waddell, 65, was at the Libbie Mill Library on Thursday, Aug. 1 when he had a heart attack. He later learned the heroic actions of bystanders is what kept him alive. 

“They were like my angels and I’ll thank them for the rest of my life,” Waddell said.

Randy Waddell

When Waddell collapsed on the library’s second floor, library manager Adrienne Minock, another librarian and a local nurse who happened to be nearby started CPR and grabbed the library’s portable defibrillator.

“Their staff is actually trained on how to work the defibrillator,” Waddell said.

Within minutes, paramedics arrived and took Waddell to St. Mary’s Hospital.

Libbie Mill Library

“I didn’t know what in the world was going on, but he (the paramedic) said, ‘Just take it easy. We’re taking you to the hospital, you had a heart attack’,” Waddell said.

Waddell was transferred to VCU Medical Center where he had surgery for his heart and spent six days recovering.

Still visible were the bruises on his ribs from the CPR that saved his life. Waddell told 8News he has been dealing with heart issues since 2005.

“It’s just something that I’ve dealt with,” he said. “I think in my case, it’s hereditary.”

He said he would not be here today if it were not for the three women who stepped in to help.

“The doctors told me I probably wouldn’t have made it if it weren’t for their intervention,” he said, “I’ll be truly humbled and blessed for the rest of my life for what they did.” 

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