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Marysville Fire District honors first responders


Courtesy Photo

From left, Eric Johnson, Blake Churchill and Kevin Johnson.

On March 15 the Marysville Fire District presented a Phoenix Award to three North County RFA responders who helped save the life of one of Marysville's own paramedics. Fire Chief Martin McFalls presented the award to North County Paramedic Eric Johnson, Firefighter Patrick Fournier and Firefighter Blake Churchill in honor of their extraordinary actions on Dec. 26, 2016, to save Marysville Fire District Paramedic Kevin Johnson, who had gone into full cardiac arrest.

On that day in December, Kevin Johnson and his family were at home preparing for an out-of-town trip when he developed chest pain. Kevin's wife, Kim, drove him to a North County Regional Fire Station - a decision that saved his life. Once inside the North County medic unit manned by Eric Johnson, Patrick Fournier and Blake Churchill, Kevin's heart stopped. The crew resuscitated Kevin and managed to keep him alive while racing to the hospital, where his heart stopped twice more. Thanks to the quick efforts of those North County responders, doctors were eventually able to stabilize Kevin and put him on the road to recovery.

"I just feel very fortunate that I was able to use my skills, education and experience to save the life of one of our brothers," Paramedic Eric Johnson said.

Kevin was able to thank Johnson and Churchill in person as they attended a ceremony at the Marysville Fire District Board meeting on March 15.

"I know from my professional experience that the outcome we are celebrating is very rare," Chief McFalls said during the ceremony. "Because Kevin Johnson means so much to me and our Fire District family, we couldn't be more grateful to Eric Johnson, Blake Churchill and Patrick Fournier for being there and keeping him here."

It's important to note that healthy living does not eliminate the risk of heart disease. Because family history is strongly linked to heart issues, regular cardiovascular screenings by a doctor are key to detecting your risk factors. For more information, visit the American Heart Association online at


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