A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

When the ride seems like a cure

Written January 9th, 2022 by Hasso Hering

My view of an Albany ambulance crew waiting with their patient in the Good Sam Emergency Department Friday afternoon.

You can’t know how excellent a service the ambulance crews of the Albany Fire Department provide until you try it out. Twice in the last two weeks I had the unwelcome opportunity to do just that.

We called 911 because my heart was acting up. After a few days in the Corvallis hospital, I went home with a pacemaker. Then there was a second ambulance ride because something didn’t seem to be right.

On the ride over there, I said something about regretting that I was taking them out of their way because we had to go to Corvallis. That’s nothing, was the response. In the last few days, they had made several runs to distant places, among them Hood River in one direction and North Bend in the other, because hospital beds were in short supply.

When we arrived at Good Sam, two Albany ambulances and one from Corvallis were already parked at the emergency door. Their crews were waiting in the hallway with their patients for treatment rooms or personnel to become available.

We’ve all heard about the pressure hospitals are under because of Covid-19, and this may have been a small example.

In my case, the wait was one hour, but I was in no distress. It seemed as though with the care provided by the firefighters and medics on the AFD ambulances, the ride itself had a curative effect. (hh)

Postscript: And don’t worry, I’m home and the fingers can still type.

27 responses to “When the ride seems like a cure”

  1. Ray Kopczynski says:

    Super good news you write! :-)

  2. Deborah Swenson says:

    So very grateful to hear that you are alright. You, being one of the good guys, who tell/print, truth/reality, on any given subject are becoming a rare and valuable commodity in these troubled times.
    It is my understanding that because people who had health issues were not being seen, when their issues were just starting, and could have, should have been dealt with, are now dealing with much more serious and harder to deal with health problems
    When Covid started usual protocols with hospitals, clinics, doctor appointments were stopped, waiting for the onslaught of Covid emergencies – that never materialized in great numbers.
    So far everything Covid has been handled poorly at best. Affecting peoples health, freedom, wealth, jobs, businesses, schools, travel, education, mental health etc. You are very fortunate that your health issues happened when they did. You are also fortunate to have excellent medical and first responders caring for you. Many have not been so lucky.

    • John Marble says:

      Ms. Swenson:

      How sad and inappropriate you would choose to use a lovely and uplifting story as a political platform. Perhaps you should start your own blog.

  3. William Ayers says:

    Glad you’re OK Hasso!

  4. CHEZZ says:

    Stay warm and in comfort, Hasso. You are in good hands with our first responders, medical staff, and God! The bike also gets a little rest.

  5. James Engel says:

    Are those your shoes?

  6. Bob Woods says:

    Good to hear things are on an even keel. Follow the Doc’s orders.

    • P. Richner says:

      I smiled at this response.

      My mother always said, “What is the point of going to doctors if you’re not going to take their advice?”

      Thinking good thoughts on your behalf, Hasso. I hope to read your blog for many more years. And thank you.

  7. Russ Burchard says:

    I’m glad you’re OK, Hasso. Take care.

  8. Patricia Eich says:

    It’s good you were able to be seen and hope you have no more problems with your heart, Very helpless feeling to be in the ED. I appreciate all the health care workers. Stay well.

  9. Barry N. Libbs says:

    Way to handle your situation with grace,

    Now back to being amongst the cantankerous.

  10. Steve Anderson says:

    So glad to hear that you’re on the mend…..but quite the ordeal! And a true reporter even while being a patient! Prayers for a healthy recovery!

  11. James Engel says:

    You have a big heart to share info & opinions with us & WE don’t want to loose you way too soon. How ’bout I come up with a jug to your place & we can swap info. lies, and other mundane matters.

    • Hasso Hering says:

      Thanks but for the time being I’m trying to avoid unnecessary meetings.

      • centrist says:

        Good strategy right now. The pump got some help, but you spent time in a place full.of less-than-healthy folks. (Not pitching blame at them. Unlikely any chose to be there)
        Bet for success, but keep your guard up.
        Oh, for some reading enjoyment, look for an article in Oregonlive.com about an old newsy (Doug Baker) who had a 6 day a week column for the Journal.
        Cool fellow who could turn a phrase on many an interesting subject. Column ran in the left two columns of page 2 .

  12. Connie Wildfang says:

    Stay well, Hasso. I very much enjoy your blog.

  13. Aimee A. Drown Harris says:

    You are so right about APD’s first responders and ambulance crews! Right after thanksgiving, 2018, I ended up completely unexpectedly. I woke up in ICU, where I spent 3 weeks. Another 2 weeks in “ICU light”, and another week on a regular floor, followed by a month in rehab. These folks got to my house quickly (I live 1/2 hour away from Albany), proceeded swiftly and professionally, all the while comforting my husband and communicating to him as to what was transpiring. I had been extremely fatigued for about two days; unbeknownst to myself, I had a raging UTI which had gone septic. I had gotten sick and aspirated to my lungs, and wound up with necrotizing pneumonia. My ICU nurse told me he wasn’t sure I would walk out of the hospital. They had my family preparing for my funeral. The reason I give all this personal detail, is to make clear just how bad I was, because as far as I am concerned, APD’s ambulance crew’s skilled paramedics and their quick decision to take me to River Bend Hospital in Eugene because they could get me there faster, deeming time was of the essence, combined with the skilled and excellent care of I received at River Bend Hospital are responsible for saving my life. Can’t praise APD and all of our first responders, medical staff and all associated personnel enough! So grateful for all they do!

  14. Mitalene says:

    Lifting in prayers of continued healing Hasso! I appreciate you sharing your story.
    Yes, they do take good care of you… & yes that “view” sure IS an alarming wake up call!
    (I, too, always ask to go to Corvallis..)

  15. N Looney says:

    Glad you’re all right. I really appreciate your blog! I wish you the best in this new year of 2022.

  16. Carla Mundt says:

    Mind your p’s and q’s — to stay healthy — for you AND your wife. My husband passed a year ago. We had a good 55 years of marriage. Damn lonley now.

  17. Lundy says:

    Hasso, glad you are doing OK … and your account made me think of the time AFD personnel crossed the street to care for/transport our news editor, as one of our photographers documented the scene. Thankfully the news ed was all right too.

  18. John says:

    I hope you stay healthy!

  19. Debbie Ferguson says:

    I had the opportunity to try out our system not too long ago, was treated with the most respect. Very nice guys.

  20. Bob Bush says:

    Glad you’re OK Hasso! After a while you get to start memorizing the room numbers and how many ceiling tile are in each one. If you look close enough there is a hidden code in each room….or maybe that was the stuff they gave me….check it out could be a coupon for another ride…!!!..Get well…..

  21. Elaine says:

    Hi Hasso,
    I haven’t been receiving your blog and didn’t know you weren’t well!
    Glad you are ok and hope for more news from you.

  22. Joe Bingelei says:

    Hello Hasso,
    This is the first I heard of your heart problem and hope you have a full and speedy recovery. I agree that the Albany Fire Department ambulances are great to deal with and when researching cardiologists in past, I really liked what Corvallis has to offer the community. One of the best but hope you, me, and everyone else stays healthy and safe and do not have any medical emergencies or problems. But as we get older, these things happen.
    And the health field has been strained so much since they had to start of Covid-19.
    As for heart health and just overall health. Exercise is so important, the bike riding you do is so easy on the body and so very important and healthy. and I will not go into the supplements I take even though I’m fairly young. Maybe save it for a FB post.

    Take care and hope to see you back on the bike soon. Love your write-ups and what you do for the community by keeping us informed.

    You won’t see me pedaling around tell around spring as I’m a snowbird and also recovering from a broken wrist.
    And sorry, I was kind of all over the place. feel free to edit anything out. hehe
    Joe Bingelei


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