The fireman who brought a heart attack victim back to life has been rewarded for his good deed.
On Tuesday night, Stephen Keyter, 45, was awarded the City of Cape Town’s 2016 Safety and Security Service Commendation for the second time in his career.
In January, Stephen, a senior fireman and paramedic based at Goodwood Fire Station, was standing at a filling station when he heard an emergency call over his radio about a car that had veered off the West Coast Road.
The patient was driving alone in Melkbosstrand when he went into cardiac arrest.
Stephen was working overtime that day and rushed to the scene.
A doctor, who had already administered CPR for 20 minutes, decided to stop his efforts, but the fireman was determined to save the driver’s life.
Stephen took over and after a 10-minute battle, he got a pulse.
Commenting on his win, the humble fireman says: “It’s a nice feeling. It was me and the crew of paramedics who helped that day.”
He laughs: “I saved a couple more lives since then. Not as severe as that one, but I had a few calls.
“Last Sunday I responded to a car accident where the patient suffered five broken ribs on both sides. He is still in the (intensive care unit).”
Stephen first won the Safety and Security Service Commendation award in 2012, when he attended to a 21-year-old drug user who had overdosed.
He brought the young man back from the brink of death, but unfortunately the patient passed away the next day.
Mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith, says more than 200 members received awards at Tuesday’s ceremony.
“Many of them were recommendations that came from members of the public,” he says.
“Notably, some of them get awards every year, but there are some people who are really consistent.
“It makes you realise that we really have a gem here.”
Smith says in addition to the award, members get a day off, which they can also exchange for a day’s pay.