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Updated: 6:43 p.m. Monday, March 4, 2013 | Posted: 4:17 p.m. Monday, March 4, 2013
The Pittsburgh Penguins fan who had a heart attack while walking into the Consol Energy Center last month was recently released from the hospital, and wanted to thank those who stepped in to help him.
Pittsburgh Police Officer Forrest Hodges, who was working traffic detail for the Feb. 22 game, said he heard a woman scream and then saw her catch David Allen in her arms.
“I remember walking across the street, putting my hand out and then I went down,” Allen said. “I’m a 1946 machine that the parts are starting to go bad.”
Hodges and a former military medic performed CPR on Allen, 66.
Allen, who is a retired Vietnam veteran, said he was honored to know a fellow serviceman also jumped into action to help him.
According to Hodges, a stranger got an automatic defibrillator from the nearby Marriott hotel, and Hodges used it on the victim.
"Our immediate thought was choking because that's what it looked like, and seconds later I knew he wasn't a choking victim," Hodges said.
Allen was rushed to UPMC Mercy Hospital, where he remained for several days before being released.
"I'm just happy that the guy survived," Hodges said. "Anyone else would have done the same thing."
Allen told Channel 11’s Vince Sims Monday that he doesn’t like having a debt in life, but he’s going to pay it forward by living right and eating healthy.
“How much can you say thank you to someone for saving your life?” Allen said.
Allen fought back tears as he said he wanted to meet Hodges after he gets well enough.
"It's all because of Officer Hodges. I can't thank him enough and I don't know how to thank him enough,” Allen said.
Hodges said he's performed CPR several times over his 19-year career, but none had the impact of that night.
"Emotionally, I don't have words to explain how happy I am that the man survived," Hodges said.
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