Klamath Falls woman honored for saving a life

Klamath Falls, Ore. – A nursing assistant who helped save the life of a co-worker in Klamath Falls gets some special recognition, and a reward that may help to save lives in the future.

Cyndy Anderson fainted briefly while she was on duty at Best Care Treatment Center last December.

She asked nursing assistant Ashley Spillane to check on her. “She came down and took my vitals, and my heart rate was 28.”

NBC5 News asked Spillane if she’d ever seen a pulse rate that low in a living person. “I’ve never seen a pulse that low in anybody before,” she answered.

E.M.T’s took Anderson to the hospital, where she was given a pacemaker just before Christmas.

“I feel amazing,” said Anderson on her recovery. “I’ve lost some weight, and I’m doing a lot better.”

Spillane was honored by staff at Best Care Wednesday for her life saving efforts.

Best Care Program Director Karen Schmid points out that Spillane was also presented with a financial gift. “An anonymous benefactor has come forward and paid for Ashley Spillane’s tuition through college for the next year and a half.”

“I definitely want to stay in the health field,” said Spillane. “I’m currently in the health information management program.”

E.M.T’s David Towers and Kyle Brink were also honored for their efforts in getting Anderson to the hospital.

Spillane says she’s grateful for the experience, “We’ve become extremely close.  I would say Cyndy is like family.”

Anderson agrees, “She was just my angel that day.”


KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970’s.  He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.Lyle’s job history is quite colorful. 

He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand.  A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90’s as a news writer and commercial producer.  In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.

“The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain.  Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story”.

When he’s not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.

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