Skip to content

BEHIND THE SCENES: Nurses recognized for saving man's life twice in same day

BayToday reporter takes us behind the scenes

Two registered nurses have recently received well-deserved recognition for their heroic actions in saving a man's life in the North Bay area. On February 4, the Burke family experienced a terrifying incident when their father suffered a severe head injury from a fall in his home. Fortunately, Melissa Cross and Denis Boulianne, both registered nurses in the Emergency Department, played a vital role in his recovery.

After being rushed to the hospital by ambulance, the Burke family witnessed their father's heart stopping while he was receiving treatment. Thanks to the swift administration of CPR, Melissa and Denis managed to revive him. Although the family was assured of his stability, their father was moved to a different room for closer monitoring.

In this new room, the Burke family had the privilege of meeting Melissa and Denis, who instantly reassured them with their calming presence and reassurances about their father's well-being. The family felt a sense of relief, knowing that their father was in capable hands. Little did they know that another hurdle awaited them.

Unexpectedly, Mr. Burke's heart stopped once again, sending the family into panic. In that intense moment, Melissa and Denis rose to the occasion, demonstrating their exceptional skills and dedication. One family member vividly remembers the experience, particularly the press of the Code Blue button, a call for immediate medical attention.

What followed left an indelible mark on the family's memory. Denis fearlessly leaped onto their father's bed and initiated CPR, successfully reviving him for the second time that day. Melissa, displaying remarkable empathy, joined the family's embrace to provide comfort and assurance, assuring them that everything possible was being done for their father. Her calm and professional demeanor in such a chaotic and emotional moment left the family awestruck.

The Burke family will forever remain grateful to Denis and Melissa, not only for saving their father's life but also for the genuine compassion and concern they showed during this difficult situation. Their dedication and extraordinary actions prompted the family to make a generous donation to the Foundation, as an expression of their gratitude. This gesture led to the nurses being honored with the Golden Heart Award, a prestigious recognition bestowed upon individuals or departments who have made a significant impact on patients' lives.

The Grateful Family donation program, which facilitates this award, allows patients or their families to acknowledge the exceptional efforts of staff members, physicians, volunteers, or departments. Recipients of the Golden Heart Award are recognized during staff meetings and via the hospital's social media channels. In addition, they are presented with a golden heart badge to be worn on their name tags, symbolizing their unwavering commitment to patient care.

Melissa Cross and Denis Boulianne exemplify the spirit of dedication and selflessness that defines the nursing profession. Their heroism and compassionate care serve as an inspiration to all, reminding us of the profound impact healthcare professionals can have on the lives of those they serve.

Video Summary:

A remarkable story unfolds in North Bay as two nurses, Melissa Cross and Denis Boulianne, become the heroes responsible for saving Lloyd Burke's life. At 94 years old, Burke experienced a severe head injury followed by not one, but two cardiac arrests. Both times, Melissa and Denis resuscitated him, showcasing their incredible skills and dedication. The family expressed their gratitude by making a generous donation to the North Bay Hospital Foundation, which led to the nurses receiving the prestigious Golden Heart Award.

Amidst the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic and its strain on the healthcare system, this heartwarming story serves as a morale boost for nurses and celebrates their often unsung successes. The Burke family witnessed the heroic efforts firsthand, as Melissa and Denis were present during the cardiac arrests and administered life-saving measures. The family reached out to the hospital foundation, sharing the story of the nurses' extraordinary actions.

Despite the challenging circumstances, Lloyd Burke's recovery has been positive, and he remains in good spirits during his extended hospital stay. The family is grateful for the exceptional care provided by Melissa and Denis, whose efforts not only saved Burke's life but also brought hope and comfort to his loved ones. The Golden Heart Award serves as a symbol of recognition for the nurses' remarkable achievements, reaffirming the impact healthcare professionals can have on their patients' lives.

Overall, this behind-the-scenes story highlights the dedication, resilience, and compassionate care exhibited by Melissa Cross and Denis Boulianne, inspiring us all and shedding light on the often-unseen heroes within our healthcare system.