+
More

This innovative app allows volunteer responders to help strangers in need.

Have dreams of being a real-life superhero? There's an app for that.

Jeff Olson was elbow-deep in a car engine when he heard his cellphone ping. He dropped everything and ran out the door.

The ping was an alert from an app he had on his phone called PulsePoint, which points Good Samaritans in the direction of a distress call. The app was developed by Richard Price, a retired fire chief who understands the importance of quick responses to a crisis.


Image courtesy of PulsePoint.

"It sounded like an Amber Alert, you know how they come out, and so I looked at it and it said CPR needed and it gave the address," Olson told KXLY, the ABC affiliate in Spokane, Washington.

The alert Olson received said a young boy had stopped breathing just a few blocks away.

Since Olson was trained in CPR, he knew he might be able to help. He sprinted over to the address PulsePoint gave him, where he found the boy — just an infant — unconscious.

His mother was panicking because the baby had started turning blue.

Image via KXLY/YouTube.

Olson had been a volunteer EMT for Deer Park Ambulance, but he'd never performed CPR on an infant before.

In that moment, however, he knew his skills were better than nothing, so he scooped the little boy up and attempted rescue breathing. His efforts ended up saving the baby's life.

Image via KXLY/YouTube.

Olson's heroic act was the first to be directly attributed to the PulsePoint app and is a prime example of how helpful apps like it could be to communities nationwide.

Since its inception, several other Good Samaritan apps have hit the market.

One, which appropriately enough is called the GoodSAM app, uses GPS technology to locate rescue and medical professionals in the area of an emergency. Another called First Aid by the American Red Cross gives easy-to-follow instructions on how to handle most common first aid emergencies.

PulsePoint is distinctive in that it gets nearby civilians on the scene before first responders so that they can take action more quickly if needed.

For now, PulsePoint only works in communities where it's been implemented by the local fire department and/or EMS agency.

The Seattle Fire Department just announced that it has adopted the app and is encouraging residents to download it.

It's helpful to have basic CPR training if you plan to use it, but if you don't, the app does have a handy interactive diagram, complete with compression rate metronome.

GIF via PulsePoint Foundation.

"CPR today is very easy to perform and can be learned quickly in informal settings such as community street fairs, group training sessions, take-home DVD-based courses and even by watching brief online videos," says Jan Sprake from the Medic One Foundation, who has been working with the app since its inception, though Sprake is careful to note that these training environments are not the same as being CPR certified.

It's unclear how the fire department and PulsePoint will handle liability issues for the app's users; generally it's best to let trained professionals handle medical emergencies. In situations where time is of the essence, however, an immediate though untrained response may still be superior to no response, at least until the first responders can arrive and take over.

The PulsePoint app was originally designed to assist victims of sudden cardiac arrest, which kills nearly 1,000 people each day.

Without immediate assistance, people who suffer sudden cardiac arrest — basically, severe heart attacks in which the heart stops immediately — have a slim chance of survival.

If CPR is administered within minutes of arrest, a person's odds of survival increase dramatically.

Image via PulsePoint.

How dramatically? According to a recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine, patients who received CPR from a bystander before medical help arrived were more than twice as likely to survive the incident than those who didn't.

Now, imagine there are 30 capable, volunteer responders within 10 blocks of the person suffering sudden cardiac arrest, all of whom have been alerted to the situation by PulsePoint or a similar app. That person's chances of survival just went through the roof, didn't it?

If every community implemented volunteer responder apps like this, SCA might no longer be a death sentence.

To get your local community on board, write your local fire chief, EMS office, and/or your local elected officials and tell them how crucial such apps could be in saving a life. There are plenty of potential real-life heroes like Jeff Olson in this country, they just need an app to tell them where to go.

Check out PulsePoint's instructional video here:


Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

Keep ReadingShow less

Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

Keep ReadingShow less