Visitor Suffers Fatal Heart Attack while Hiking at Catoctin Mountain Park

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Date: October 14, 2014
Contact: Debra Mills, 301-663-9399


A 69 year old male park visitor experienced a medical incident while hiking with his family on the Hog Rock Trail in Catoctin Mountain Park on Tuesday, October 14, 2014. A 911 call, received at approximately 1323 hours, requested medical assistance for an unconscious patient.

Two National Park Service Volunteers who were in the area performing maintenance activities, began rendering assistance to the patient and family almost immediately after the 911 call. One volunteer administered compression only CPR while the other provided direction for responding EMS units.The first Park Ranger arrived on scene at 1332 hours. She immediately employed an AED unit which advised there was no shockable rhythm. CPR was continued with ventilation.

The patient was transported to Frederick Memorial Hospital by the Thurmont Ambulance Company with a Park Ranger assisting as Park Medic. The patient, a retired United States Park Police officer from Gaithersburg, MD was declared dead at the hospital at 1436. ALS units from Frederick Fire and Rescue, Guardian Hose and the Frederick Sheriff's Department also responded to the incident.

The United States Park Police and the National Park Service have reached out to the family to offer any assistance they may need. A Critical Incident Stress Debriefing team has been requested and will be available to any staff member who wishes to discuss the event with a peer counselor.

Catoctin Mountain Park is one of over 400 units administered by the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior. Correspondence should be addressed to: Superintendent, Catoctin Mountain Park, 6602 Foxville Road, Thurmont, MD 21788. Our website address is www.nps.gov/cato.The Visitor Center is open from 9:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. daily. Emergency calls should be directed to the National Capital Region Communications Center at 1-866-677-6677.

-NPS-





Last updated: April 10, 2015

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