A local business has donated a defibrillator to a Whanganui gym after a scary incident involving one of its members.
Clarke McLeod, who is managing director of Ezi Finance, donated a defibrillator to City Gym Fitness Centre in Ridgway St after one of his friends had a major health incident at the gym.
The 49-year-old man, who didn't want to be named, suffered a sudden heart attack three weeks ago during one of his workouts.
City Gym owner Tiare Ranginui, who had taken over the gym just one month earlier, said it was one of the most frightening things he had ever seen.
Trained in first aid, Ranginui and two other members who were at the gym knew it was a very serious situation.
"The client literally just dropped while he was doing his workout and began to go purple straight away," Ranginui said.
"Two fast-acting members, who were on the spot as it happened, recognised this and started CPR straight away. They literally kept him alive for the 10 minutes that it took for the paramedics to arrive and take over."
The paramedics administered CPR for 20 minutes to stabilise the patient and get him to the emergency department at Whanganui Hospital, where it was decided he needed to be airlifted to Wellington Hospital's intensive care ward.
McLeod drove down to Wellington to support his friend and did some thinking when he was at the hospital.
"I just felt so bloody helpless. My mate was lying there and his partner was worried sick about the unknown. We all were. Would he survive? What can I do? It was a horrible feeling."
With a strong community mind, McLeod decided it was best to donate the defibrillator to City Gym and all of its members just in case such an incident happened again.
"For me, it's about taking the good from the bad. I would hate any family to have to go through something this scary if it can be avoided and it's great that my company can do its bit."
Ranginui said he was blown away by the gesture and was thrilled that everyone who went to the gym could have peace of mind if it ever happened again.
"We are all just a bit more prepared, because it comes with simple voice instructions for people to be able to use quickly."
The 49-year-old gym member is now home and recovering from his ordeal.