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Not your ordinary cable appointment

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Jerry Harlan
  • AFNORTH Public Affairs
What started out as normal down time at home waiting on the cable guy turned into extraordinary circumstances that led to a life saved and a lifelong friendship.

"I was sitting at home waiting for an appointment and all of the sudden my door burst open," said Capt. Tim Kosmala, Air Battle Manager at the 337th Air Control Squadron. "My neighbor's son, Landon, came running in yelling that his mom needed help."

Kosmala, recognizing something was seriously wrong, immediately ran with Landon to his house a couple of doors down. When he got there, Landon's mom, Maureen, was sitting outside in a chair unconscious, breathing irregularly with no heartbeat. He recognized she was in serious trouble and didn't hesitate to help.

After verifying somebody called 911, Kosmala picked Maureen up and carried her inside to assess her condition. He determined CPR was needed and immediately began chest compressions.

"I'm glad I paid attention during Self-Aid and Buddy Care and CPR classes," Kosmala said. "I was able to fall back onto my training and react the way I should have, quickly."

After a few minutes, another friend, Cheryl Pentzer, an emergency-room Registered Nurse arrived to help. Like Kosmala, she just happened to be home that afternoon. The two of them continued CPR until paramedics arrived 16 minutes later.

"Tim reacted without hesitation, saving Maureen's life and preventing any permanent damage," said Col. Lee Knowlton, Maureen's husband and the 1st Air Force Deputy Director of Operations. "Even a minute's delay could have had catastrophic consequences on her and my family."

"Maureen is the rock of my family," Knowlton said. "She is like my own 'fire-and-forget' missile - once direction is set, I know the home front will be taken care of."

"Doing something like this, it really made me appreciate the life I have, the limited time somebody has with their family," Kosmala said. "Maureen is a friend of mine and I was determined to keep going until somebody stopped me. I would want the same for my family."

"The stars aligned that day - making sure Tim and Cheryl were around when normally they wouldn't be," Knowlton said. "There are no words to describe how I feel about those two, what they mean to me and my family."

Because of the direct action by both Kosmala and Pentzer, Maureen has almost completely recovered with no long-term effects from the incident.