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Husband saves wife's life with CPR, urges others to take part in free class

HOUSTON – The American Heart Association and Houston Methodist's DeBakey Institute for Cardiovascular Education and Training are joining together this weekend for free CPR training sessions.

They say approximately 90 percent of people who suffer out-of-hospital cardiac arrests die.

If CPR is performed, it can double or triple a victim’s chance of survival. Seth Barrett gave his wife that chance of survival one Easter a few years ago.

He said his wife, Julie, was the picture of health. But when they took a walk one Easter, she shockingly almost died.

"She was in bad shape. There was no pulse. She wasn't responsive, obviously," Barrett recalled.

Barrett said he had trained in CPR, but gives credit to other people who sprang into action when he was desperate to save his wife.

"It's really a chain of survival. You start with CPR. You get 911 called. You stay with that person, working on them, until first responders come," Barrett said. "You have to be part of that bridge to the first responders, and that's what's so key."

It was key for his wife, Julie, who now wears a pacemaker but said the episode had such a good outcome, there are no permanent problems.

"All the little miracles that happened along the way. I'm here and better than ever," Julie Barrett said.

So the happy ending is that Julie survived with CPR ...

Or maybe it's all that she's doing in good health today because of it -- like becoming a mom for the fourth time.

"Honestly, because of CPR, because at the time when this occurred we had three babies, well, now we have four," Seth Barrett said.

"Because, really, just a few simple actions can change somebody's life," Julie said.

Are you prepared to provide CPR in an emergency?

Saturday morning, there will be free CPR training sessions starting at 9 a.m. at Minute Maid Park.

WHAT: Free hands-only CPR training for Houstonians, in English and Spanish, hosted by American Heart Association and the DeBakey Institute for Cardiovascular Education & Training

WHEN: Saturday
Four sessions available: 9 a.m., 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and noon

WHERE: Minute Maid Park
501 Crawford
Houston, TX, 77002
Enter through the Atrium entrance off of Texas Ave.
Free parking available.

REGISTER: Online pre-registration is encouraged at www.houstonsavealife.com.