LAKELAND, Fla. (FOX 13) - The staff at Spring Lane Ranch knew getting trained in CPR was important, but when a teen fainted just after a riding lesson last Tuesday, that training became invaluable.
Bryelle Touchton was wrapping up her first horse riding lesson at Spring Lane Ranch when a staff member noticed the teen acting strangely.
"I could see her walking the horse back into the barn and when she got to the far end she looked like she was getting woozy and she looked like she fainted," said Kim Wilkey, the site manager at the ranch.
The 15-year-old girl collapsed in front of her horse, Canela.
"She was blue. She was not reacting to anything," said Alex Zapata, a trainer at Spring Lane Ranch.
Zapata and several of his colleagues jumped into action, administering CPR. They had no way to know Bryelle had gone into cardiac arrest.
"We evaluated her right away and could tell that she had no pulse and no respiration so we started CPR right away," explained Wilkey.
"We started compressions, hard, hard, hard, and she reacted to it," said Zapata.
It took almost 15 minutes for paramedics to arrive. Her mother, Beth Collins watched as Spring Lane Ranch employees kept her daughter alive.
"I'm really ever more so grateful for Spring Lane Ranch for everything that they have done for my daughter," said Collins. "Had it not been for them, she wouldn't be here today."
The workers at the ranch were CPR-certified last August.
"You never know when you're going to need it. Especially like that, a 15-year-old girl, you would never expect that," said Zapata.
"Most people don't survive the kind of episode that she had. We were all thrilled that we were able to be there for her," said Wilkey.
Bryelle has been in the hospital for almost a week, but it will be a long road to recovery.
"She's doing a lot better," said Collins. "Especially over the past couple of days, she's been out of the bed a couple of times. She understands everything."
Collins says her daughter had no previous health scares. Doctors say she could need a pacemaker or defibrillator inserted into her heart.
For updates on Bryelle's care, visit her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/donate/398120380745706/10216695711718099/