Thanks to guest speakers at a club meeting, a California Kiwanian helps save a life. 

By Phil Abrams, president, San Carlos Kiwanis Club, California, U.S.

We all know that being a Kiwanian is a great way to support one’s local community and the larger worldwide population. And sometimes, being an active member and attending meetings translates into something beyond everyday service. 

On April 11, 2023, the San Carlos Kiwanis Club in California, U.S., held a dinner meeting.  In attendance was club member James Dean “Reggie” Regino, (pictured below), who coaches tennis and pickleball. The seven guest speakers that evening — local firefighters and EMT/paramedics — focused on how to help someone who experiences a heart attack or cardiac arrest. Club members focused, asked questions and learned — not knowing those skills would be called into play just months later.

In mid-September, on his day off, Regino stopped by the pickleball courts in town. He was watching some of his adult students play a game when one collapsed, and he quickly realized that she was not breathing.

Remembering the training from the club meeting months earlier, Regino got help from other players and initiated an emergency call to the fire department. With support from the dispatcher, Regino gave the student CPR, using the technique he learned on that April night. He kept her alive until emergency help arrived some minutes later and the paramedics took over.  
Today, Reggie’s friend and student is recovering more each day. We are proud of you, Reggie — an amazing Kiwanian!