April 7 was an emotional day for Carolyn Rhinehart.
The Reedsburg woman had the chance to meet the man who saved her life earlier this year. EMT Lucas Sobeck was recognized by Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch; state Rep. Ed Brooks, R-Reedsburg; state Sen. Howard Marklein, R-Spring Green; and members of the Reedsburg Area Ambulance Service during a special ceremony at the ambulance office.
Sobeck was driving to Wisconsin Dells on Eighth Street in Reedsburg when he noticed a vehicle had stopped near a fire hydrant. He wasn’t on duty but thought it was unusual, so he turned around and stopped to take a look. Sobeck said he found Rhinehart unresponsive in the driver’s seat.
He called 911 and help arrived in the form of Sauk County Sheriff Chip Meister and other paramedics. Once they’d broken the windows, Sobeck said he helped remove Rhinehart, put the car in park and immediately started resuscitation.
Rhinehart was transported to a hospital, where she was treated for a heart attack. She said she has no memory of the events leading up to the rescue, and that her first memory was being visited by Meister in the hospital.
She said she doesn’t recall having any unusual symptoms prior to the heart attack, and she thought she was perfectly healthy.
Rhinehart wept when she embraced Sobeck, repeatedly thanking him for his efforts.
“It was amazing,” she said. “He’s my angel. How can you thank somebody who has saved your life?”
Sobeck said he was “overwhelmed” by meeting Rhinehart and receiving the award. He didn’t expect to get such recognition for just doing his duty.
The La Valle resident has been involved with EMS for 10 years.
The ceremony also recognized other EMTs and paramedics who worked at the scene. Those who received awards included paramedics Keifpher Ballweg, Robert Butler and Trevor Hinze and EMTs Amanda Burton and Deborah Rego.