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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

This Local Business Owner Worked in EMS for 36 Years. He Knew How Important Buying an AED for His Business Was

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This Local Business Owner Worked in EMS for 36 Years. He Knew How Important Buying an AED for His Business Was.

by James Coulter

Joe Garrison knows how important an automated external defibrillator (AED) can be in an emergency. He worked as a firefighter and EMT for 36 years. He also lost a fellow paramedic and close friend to cardiac arrest.

As such, Garrison not only had his employees take a CPR and first aid class, but he also purchased an AED for his business from a local organization dedicated to promoting heart health.

On Thursday evening, Melanie Brown Culpepper and her volunteers from Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation provided and installed an AED at Garrison Property Services in Dundee.

Garrison had purchased the AED from Melanie. As someone with extensive experience in EMS, he understood the importance of having an emergency device like that in case such an emergency arises.

“Melanie does an awesome job promoting [public safety] so we certainly wanted to buy from her, and hopefully other companies will,” he said. “I can tell you from experience, being a firefighter and EMT for 36 years, they do work, and you never know when that time is coming and you need to be ready when it comes.”

Melanie Brown Culpepper started her non-profit organization three years ago following the untimely passing of her late fiancée, Michael Culpepper, who passed away from cardiac arrest.

Not wanting anyone else to suffer a similar fate, she started Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation and has donated more than 30 AEDs to local businesses and establishments across Polk County.

Her most recent donation, aside from Garrison’s Properties, was at Barrel 239 in Winter Haven. She plans on donating another AED to the Historic Ritz Theater in Winter Haven next week.

Melanie was inspired by Garrison’s background as a firefighter and EMT, as well as his dedication to requiring his employees to receive emergency training like first aid and CPR.

“I am just glad he was able to give back to the Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation, and also share his story,” she said. “I will continue to keep raising funds and anything I can do to raise awareness.”

For more information about Culpepper’s Cardiac Foundation, visit their Facebook page at:https://www.facebook.com/honoringculpepper

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