ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — A 60-year-old man stabbed inside the Monroe Branch Library in Rochester Tuesday is expected to live and local doctors said Wednesday it’s because of a police officer’s quick, yet simple action; an action most of us would do ourselves.
When officer Nicholas Vandemar entered the library on Monroe Avenue, he first saw blood on the floor, and then a man crumpled up against the wall — stabbed once in the arm.
“I could tell by his condition, and just by how out of it he was that he had lost a lot of blood,” Vandemar said. “There was a gray sweatshirt wrapped around his right bicep and he was complaining about right arm pain.”
The officer did what he was trained to do: He grabbed the tourniquet off his belt and tied it around the man’s arm. Doctors would later tell Vandemar his actions prevented the man from bleeding out.
“That’s when I started to digest how serious it was and how vital or lucky that things just worked out perfectly,” he said.
This was exactly the kind of response Dr. Mark Gestring and his team at URMC Kessler Trauma Center like to see.
They promote the Stop the Bleed program, which is designed to get more tourniquets out into the community and more people trained on how to use them.
“It’s not difficult to use,” Dr. Gestring said. “You only have to look at it once or twice to get a sense of how it works. The equipment is cheap and it doesn’t expire. We’re trying to co-locate those things in the public whether it’s libraries or train stations or private vehicles so that people can have access to these things when they need them.”
Which would allow them to do what officer Vandemar did — save a life by stopping the bleed.