Hero security guard had no idea he was saving his uncle's life
NORTH Dublin security guard Darragh Lawlor proved that customers are safe in his hands after he rescued a man who was suffering a heart attack - only to discover it was his uncle.
The heroic 24-year-old rushed to the aid of a man who collapsed in a bookies in Swords, north Dublin, last week.
He administered CPR to the man for two minutes he said, then took a brief break and was stunned to realise that the man was his mother's brother Paddy.
He said he felt a surge of adrenaline when he realised that he was treating a family member.
"Now if it was a complete stranger I wouldn't have given up on them either, but once I knew it was my uncle I wasn't stopping for anything," said the security guard.
Darragh was the first to respond to a call from the manager of the Pavilions centre in Swords.
He rushed into action and arrived on the scene within two minutes.
"It took me maybe two minutes to get there because I knew time was short and I really legged it down," he said.
"Our office is based on the very top level of the centre so that delayed me a bit, but once I got the machine I ran as fast as I could," he added.
Fully trained in how to use a defibrillator through his job with Noonan security and competent in CPR because of his work with St John's Ambulance brigade, quick-thinking Darragh managed to save his uncle's life.
His instincts kicked into action - but he initially didn't recognise the man because his face had turned grey.
"I don't even know if I did the right thing, as I said I'm trained in CPR, but technique and correct procedure went to one side, I just kept pressing and pumping, thankfully it worked," he said.
Darragh called for at least one visible defibrillator in every town across the country in the wake of the drama.
He said that the feeling of saving someone's life was the "best feeling" ever and that the family connection simply amplified it.
Paddy (55) spent three days in intensive care after the episode, but his nephew said he is already back on top form.
"When I went to see him the first thing he said was, 'In the name of God, did you use a two-tonne hammer on my chest?'. That's Paddy, able to see the funny side of anything," he explained.