It’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that four years ago today, my husband, Bob Schulenberg had a heart attack in the Walmart parking lot. It was the Widowmaker…one of the deadliest types of heart attack. MY memory of that event, however, is as vivid today as if I were standing there watching it happen all over again. That day could have changed my life forever and taken his life from him…but it didn’t. My husband is still here because there are heroes among us!! They are everyday people who see a deadly situation, and don’t just turn their backs. They take action. I didn’t see the attack, because Bob had gone to put the shopping cart in the rack. I was checking my phone when a man I don’t know to that day knocked on my window and asked if I “knew this man?” I immediately realized that Bob had taken too long to get into the car.
I jumped out of the car and ran to the other side. There on the ground, with blood coming from his head was my husband. His eyes were open, but he was not there. I immediately thought that I had lost him. Then I came to my senses…sort of and got down beside him. I “demanded” that he wake up. Looking back now, I must have looked crazy, telling my unconscious husband to “wake up and get back to life” basically. Then I noticed someone was there, with a stethoscope!! Who carries a stethoscope in their car, and how did she know we needed her? Only an angel, sent by God to be there!! There were many angels in that parking lot that day. Some I now know, like Sean Pesicka-Taggart, the man who first came to my husband’s aid, and his girlfriend Laura Lance, who was a transport worker at Wyoming Medical Center, at that time (I’m very proud to say that she is now a Radiologic Technologist). Laura assisted the nurse, Ginger Sims who was the one to realize that it was not a fall or hit-and-run, but Bob’s heart that had stopped. She told her son to push the OnStar button and tell the ambulance where to respond. Then, Ginger took immediate action, and if she had not, I would have been a widow today. Ginger was doing CPR, and told me how to do rescue breathing, because I couldn’t think straight. Laura assisted in CPR, thankfully, because that is a hard job, and no one can do it for very long. Then just as suddenly, another nurse, who worked with Ginger saw what was going on, and stopped to help. Valya Boycheva is also a nurse at Wyoming Medical Center, and she took over CPR for Laura. Together the three of them continued CPR until the fire department and ambulance arrived. I’m not sure, but I think Sean called them. When the paramedics took over, I stood back and thought…”How will I ever know who to thank for their assistance?” So many heroes had stepped out of thin air, to give their all for my husband. Somehow, God made sure that I found out who they were, and I have been forever grateful for that too.
There were other angels there that day…prayer warriors!! These people were in the parking lot, and saw the situation, and immediately started praying…Lori DeSanti (a friend of mine from church), Chelsea Kessler (who immediately called her dad and stepmom, Page and Donna LePage…who, not knowing who they were praying for, called my boss, Jim Stengel and got him in prayer too), and Chelsea’s husband, Zack Kessler. There were probably countless other people there praying, because there were angels all over that parking lot that day. I have no doubt about that, and because of all the heroes, prayer warriors and angels there that day, my husband is health and most of all, still with me today.
To add to the incredible events of that day, it seemed only seconds before the firetrucks arrived, with a friend of Bob’s on the crew. Jerod Levin saw me and immediately came to my aid. I was standing there feeling very small and totally lost, and he told me I could go with Bob in the ambulance, and that he would bring my car to the hospital for me!! And, when we got to the hospital…on a Sunday afternoon, all the right people, Jon Cook and Sam Cann (both of whom work in the Heart Cath Lab), just happened to be there, and they know Bob, because he had worked on their cars. From attack to full treatment took two hours…two hours!! How could that have all came together? Only God…only God!! And to this day, I give him all the praise, and I will be forever grateful for the heroes among us, who stepped up to the plate when Bob and I needed them most. They are family now, and they always will be.