A beauty student saved the life of her new boyfriend when he suffered a heart attack on their first date – by giving him the KISS OF LIFE.
Zach Selby, 19, and Chloe Tones, 16, planned a romantic camping trip to celebrate the first day of their relationship together last Sunday.
But the young lovers’ first kiss ended up being the kiss of life after Zach collapsed suddenly at the campsite in Woolsthorpe-by-Colesterworth, Lincs.
The teenager, who has no first-aid training, leapt into action to perform life-saving CPR while her new boyfriend lay on the ground unconscious.
Ambulance staff instructed Chloe over the phone as she also performed mouth-to mouth resuscitation attempts for 40 minutes while paramedics rushed to the scene.
Zach, an apprentice hairdresser, was taken to Grantham Hospital where doctors revived him and told his new girlfriend had saved his life.
He was discharged 48 hours later and is now back at home recovering in Grantham, Lincs.
Yesterday the smitten couple say their blossoming relationship is now stronger than ever and they have a special bond as a result of their ordeal.
Zach said: “If it wasn’t for my girlfriend I wouldn’t be here right now and would never have seen my family again.
“I will never forget it. I can’t believe how close I came to dying.
“She was amazing, she saved my life on our very first day as a couple – I don’t know how I will ever pay her back.
“It really makes you appreciate things, especially us.
“She’s saved my life so I can spend it with her.”
The drama began after the pair went camping with friends just hours after they began their relationship.
After enjoying a few drinks together Zach went for a walk alone to a nearby beach where he suffered a horrific pain in his chest and fell to the floor at around 3.15am.
Realising Zach had been gone a while, she and their friends went in search of him.
Luckily, she spotted the light on his mobile phone, and found him lying on the floor.
Chloe said: “I noticed this flashing light in the ground and then realised it was his phone.
“That made me worried and I looked around and realised there was the outline of a body next to it.
“He was floppy. I tried to get him up and shook him but there was nothing.
“I looked closer and it was Zach, lying face down in the grass.
“I picked him up and he woke up again so I sat him on a bench and he told me about the sharp pains in his chest.
“But then he just collapsed, he wasn’t breathing either”.
As there was nobody around to help the teenagers they dialled 999 and spoke to an operator in the ambulance control room.
Chloe added: “I told him he’d stop breathing and I had to check his pulse, and it was really fast.
“He told me to do CPR, which I have never done before. He had to talk me through doing everything.
“This was for 40 minutes until the ambulance got there – he kept waking up and gagging again.
“When I was giving his mouth to mouth his eyes were open. He was just staring up at me from lifeless eyes, it was terrifying.
“I can’t believe that was our first kiss.
“I just thought to myself, if I stop he’s not going to be able to live. I knew I had to keep going. It was awful.”
With the ambulance nowhere to be seen, the control room operator told Chloe to send a friend to a nearby public access defibrillator, giving out a code to open up the casing.
Following the instructions given by the machine, she placed the pads on Zach’s chest, continuing CPR when instructed.
Paramedics finally arrived and raced Zach to Grantham Hospital over 40 miles away from the campsite.
Zach’s brother and sister, who both work at the hospital, were soon by his side once his sister, a nurse, saw his name in a record book.
Chloe stayed at Zach’s side by his hospital bed throughout the terrifying ordeal.
She added: “It’s had a big impact on us, we’ve got a really strong bond now because I saved his life.
“I can never forget that night, and it just brought us so close together.”
Chloe’s proud mum Claire Tones, 38, added: “She’s amazing. I’m the proudest mum on the planet. I’m very, very pleased that it didn’t come to the worse and Zach is still here.”
Doctors still don’t know what caused Zach’s collapse.
As he was adopted age three and knows nothing about his biological parents and whether there are hereditary condition is responsible.
To monitor his heart, Zach will shortly have a disc attached to the organ which will collect data over two years and help doctors figure out the mystery illness.
A spokesperson for the East Midlands Ambulance Service said: “This is a great example of how members of the public can help save a life by learning first aid skills.
“We are pleased we were able to play a key role in giving him the best possible chance of surviving his heart attack.”