As an athlete, Linda Pon had to spend time in the athletic training clinic, experiencing firsthand how the treatment she received helped her. Inspired, she earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology, a master’s in athletic training and became a certified athletic trainer in 2010. Little did she know then that she would play a critical role in saving a young man’s life only a year later.
On Nov. 9, 2011, Pon, the then assistant athletic trainer at California State University, East Bay, was in the clinic when a taekwondo student came racing in – his brother was having a seizure in the class upstairs. Racing up two flights, Pon found the taekwondo instructor and a student performing CPR on the young man. She immediately instructed an assistant to call 911, checked his pulse, and after finding he was no longer breathing, applied an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and CPR was resumed.
Paramedics arrived and stabilized the victim, telling Pon that the AED had probably saved the young man’s life from what was later discovered to be a heart attack.
The victim recovered quickly and returned to college within a week. Pon credits everyone’s quick thinking and proper training in saving his life.