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Training Pays Off for Tech Sgt. Terhark in Hockey Accident

  • Published
  • By Jacob Silva-Dreyer
  • 375th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

It’s not every day a member of Team Scott gets to put their life-saving skills to the test, but that is exactly what Tech. Sgt. Andrew “Terk” Terhark did, Oct. 16. 

While playing in the Edwardsville Monday Night Hockey League, a teammate hit his head on the ice and had a seizure. Terk and Matt Wiwczaroski, a Granite City firefighter, checked for a pulse and jumped into action, providing CPR for seven minutes until the paramedics arrived.

Terk explained that while you can’t plan for situations like these, there’s a benefit to being ready.

“Military training helped me prepare for this situation,” said Terk. “But, I never thought I would need to use it.”

With a father who served as a U.S. Army pilot in Somalia during the famous ‘Black Hawk Down’ rescue mission in support of Operation Gothic Serpent, and attributed training to his survival, Terk has always taken the lifesaving skills he’s been taught in the Air Force very seriously.

Guided by Wiwczaroski, Terk performed CPR before Wiwczaroski administered a life-saving shock with an Automated External Defibrillator.

Terk noted that this moment shows how the military’s presence in the community can have a positive impact and how important the training military members go through is. Like many humble leaders, Terk is quick to give credit.

“Wiwczaroski's remarkable leadership and quick thinking prevented a catastrophic outcome,” said Terk. “The entire hockey team is grateful for his guidance and expertise, which undoubtedly saved a life.”