Days after an off-duty firefighter helped aid a 12-year-old California girl whose heart stopped on a local roller coaster, Ed Granil is eager to meet her again.
But the reunion will have to wait as the girl, Catlynne Shaw, remains in critical condition at University Medical Center.
Shaw suffered a heart attack Wednesday night while riding a roller coaster at the Circus Circus Adventuredome.
Granil, who is a Clark County Fire Department engineer, was standing in line for the attraction with his family when he noticed the 12-year-old slouched over and unconscious as the indoor roller coaster car returned to the station.
“It felt like, ‘Is this really happening,’ and sure enough, it was,” Granil said. “She took a deep breath and that was it. She was definitely in distress.”
Granil and two other people pulled Shaw from the 24-person train and laid her on the ground.
After performing CPR, Granil helped hotel security attach an automatic external defibrillator to revive her with a shock.
“From the time the car stopped to when the paramedics got there, the stress was just unbelievable,” he said.
Shaw was taken to UMC, where she remains in critical condition, hospital officials said Monday. It is unclear whether Shaw had a history of heart-related ailments.
Granil said he looks forward to meeting Shaw after she recovers. Her father shared the sentiment, Granil said.
“He was very appreciative of me being there and helping his daughter,” Granil said of the phone conversation the two shared. “He wants to meet up, and I said we’ll do that when she’s better.”
Shaw’s family, who Granil said was in town from California to relieve stress from a family member’s recent death, could not be reached for comment Monday.
The girl was on the Canyon Blaster with her cousin, who thought Shaw had fallen asleep during the 105-second ride. Shaw’s mother was waiting for the pair near the roller coaster exit at the time of the heart attack.
Yvette Monet, spokesperson for MGM Mirage, which owns Circus Circus, said the ride can reach a maximum speed of 55 miles per hour and includes a 45 degree drop.
“I’m just praying that the girl has a quick and speedy recovery so that way we can meet up,” said Granil, a father of four. “It was pretty surreal.”
Contact reporter Maggie Lillis at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0279.