by David M. Pollard
Bob Barton of Newburgh said he picked a good place to die on April 2, because he is alive to talk about it through the help of a neighbor.
While cutting grass at his mother-in-law’s home in Evansville, he suffered a cardiac arrest. The next thing he remembers is waking up in a hospital bed.
Matt Crowe, 33, of 1342 Harmony Way, was next door when Barton, 69, suffered his cardiac arrest. Crowe was alerted by a letter carrier that something was going on.
"The mailman hollered at me and I hollered to my wife to call 911," he said.
He, along with Ray Gunn, who was driving by the scene, performed CPR on Barton. Within two minutes firefighters from Hose House 5 arrived and administered an electric shock on Barton with an automatic defibrillator.
For their quick action and thinking Crowe, Gunn and the firefighters at the scene received award citations from the Fire Merit Commission on Tuesday. Firefighters receiving the citation were Donald Manz, Tom Lehman, John Boucher and Donald Waelde.
Barton said draining the oil from the lawn mower was the last thing he remembers.
Crowe said he doesn’t care for the attention for the deed. He was just happy he knew CPR.
But Barton is grateful. "Thanks to this guy I’m alive," he said. "The doctor said I was dead."
His wife, Joyce, 68, said she feels her husband is very lucky to not have suffered any permanent damage from the cardiac arrest.
"God let him live," she said. "He has something else for him to do."
Crowe’s wife, Lori, 33, said she is very proud of her husband’s actions. "He jumped right in there and did what he had to do."
Overall, Barton jokingly said that his death was pretty uneventful.
"I didn’t see lights at the end of the tunnel or angels playing music," he said. "I had a very boring death."