FORT BRAGG, N.C. -- Two students assigned to the United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School were recognized for their heroic actions, which directly resulted in saving the life of a fellow Soldier, on February 12, at the Bank Hall Auditorium.
Sgt. Nathan R. Foster and Sgt. Matthew A. Clermonth received the Army Commendation Medal for their efforts in saving a fellow Soldier's life.
While conducting morning physical training in early November 2014 two Soldiers, in training at the Joint Special Operations Medical Training Center on the campus of the United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School, were called on to aid a fellow Soldier who collapsed during a training run.
Foster and Clermont, both students in the 18 Delta Special Forces Medical Sergeant Course at USAJFKSWCS were told to double back on their run to aid a fellow Soldier who had gone into cardiac arrest.
Arriving on the scene, they found two Soldiers providing care and conducting cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the fallen Soldier. Foster and Clermont began providing additional assistance with CPR and on the bag valve mask in order to provide air to his lungs.
Clermont stayed on the BVM while Foster took two to three minute rotations providing CPR. The Soldier did not respond. The small group continued to provide care until the paramedics arrived and delivered two rounds of cardiac shock and epinephrine before gaining a pulse and the patient becoming responsive.
"I was surprised that a 19-year-old had a heart attack," said Clermont. "We were expecting a sprained ankle or a heat casualty."
"I began Advanced Cardiac Life Support and checked for a pulse," said Foster.
That quick action was enough to save his life.
"The paramedics stated that had CPR not been started right away then the Soldier would most likely not have lived," said Clermont.
The training provided at the Joint Special Operations Medical Training Center gives these future Special Forces medical sergeants the knowledge they need to render aid whenever needed.
The Special Operations Combat Medic course, the first phase of the Special Forces Medical Sergeant Course, trains selected enlisted members to manage trauma patients and provide basic medical cares.
"SOCM gave us the competency in the situation," said Foster. "I didn't feel like I didn't know what to do, we both knew what needed to be done."
"When on a clinical rotation you are expecting to work on people and around other people with higher levels of care," said Clermont. "It's good that we could unexpectedly break that training out and use it when needed without a safety net."
Special Forces medical sergeants are trained to provide emergency, routine and long-term medical care. Their training includes completion of a two-month trauma rotation in hospital emergency rooms and accredited emergency medical technician paramedic programs. After completion of Special Forces training they are fully capable of providing medical care to an allied member and host-nation personnel as well as provide veterinary care.
"This event gave us more exposure to a real world situation," said Foster. "The clinical rotations to Florida also helped with providing care to the Soldier."