A day in the life………out cycling this morning around the Hollywood Reservoir – something I do a couple of times a week as respite, enjoying this quiet, green haven in the city.
Over the last few months I’ve chanced upon; dark, iridescent rattlesnakes sunning themselves on the warm concrete path and the occasional deer, frozen attentive, before deftly prancing up into the lightly-wooded hillside. Today, on a circuit of the reservoir I came upon a man, sprawled-out on his stomach in the roadway, arms spread, face in the dirt, forehead grazed, spectacles askew. I stopped, knelt down beside him, could find no pulse or detect breathing, I rolled him onto his back and instinctively began CPR which I’d learned as a support-staff member at FPCH and pumped his chest…………silently praying I asked Jesus to be with him.
A twenty-something girl walking past and obviously in shock, called 911.
Jim, a uniformed DWP Security officer appeared and with a mouthguard, administered mouth-to-mouth and took over chest-pumping, prompted by a paramedic on speakerphone.
LAFD personnel arrived and took over, cut off his clothing, inserted a breathing line, attached an IV, searched for vital signs, pumped his chest and finally tried defibrillation. We were more than 10 minutes into the effort to revive this man, there were around six personnel working on him.
Things were becoming really hectic, I continued silently praying…….’Jesus be here with us’
Eventually the lead paramedic announced, ‘ I’m calling it…..enough.’
And so, for this person who began his day quietly out for a walk, mortal life ends.
I journal because the seemingly undignified way this mans’ time had ended was solemn, not sad, and had a palpable sense of God’s presence with us in the moment and felt a deep peace. Also a distinct realization that if we pay attention, are present, available and willing to serve, each day we become instruments of God’s will in this world.
He walks with those who trust in Him.