When you spend your life volunteering to help people, even a trip to Walmart can get complicated. Here's the story of an everyday hero, just doing his weekly grocery shopping when someone on the next aisle needed help...and Robert Mack came to the rescue.
"It was on a Sunday morning," said Robert Mack. He was at Walmart on Kearney and Glenstone in Springfield, Missouri. Just doing his weekly grocery shopping. Robert said,
"I heard somone come over the speaker asking if there was a doctor in the store."
Then a few seconds later, he says the voice over the intercom was more urgent asking for a doctor to please come to the produce section. Roberts say he thought he better go see what was going on. Robert's no doctor, but he's helped plenty of people in his life.
He sits behind the wheel of a big rig for much of his day, shuttling big trailers in and out of Springfield's O'Reilly Distribution Center. But Robert's friends and family know, this is only one of the driving forces in his life. Away from the job, he really shifts into high gear anytime there's a call for help.
Robert was only 17 when he first joined the Civil Defense fire department. Except for his time away in the Marines, he's been a volunteer fireman ever since. 10 years now with the Pleasant View Volunteer Fire Department. He says he just wanted to help people.
So for most of his life Robert's been on call for anyone in trouble. For years, he's responded to house fires, car wrecks, all kinds of emergencies. Even customizing his personal vehicle to be able to help anyone in trouble. His friend, Pattie Hunter says, "he would do anything for anybody. He served his country then volunteers shows how caring he really is."
His twin brother says he's always been this way. Ronald Mack said, "I think his nature is he cares about people."
Robert's own AED would have come in handy on that fateful day back at Walmart. But he had driven his truck to the store. The AED was at home. When he ran to the produce section, Robert found a man on the floor, his face blue, his heart stopped, and a woman who had been working with him, shouting his name.
Robert said, "I told her to call 911 and tell 'em we have a full code....and that CPR has been started. I brought him back once, but then he took three breaths and he quit."
But Robert never quit the chest compressions until the emergency medical techs arrived. Then he finished his shopping and 20 minutes later when he was leaving the store Robert said the first responders were still working on him. Robert thought the man was dead.
In fact, Mike McMullen had flatlined three times on the way to the hospital. Doctors managed to keep him alive long enough for his family to see him. Then came the triple-bypass surgery.
But miraculously today. Mike McMullen is back on his feet. He even enjoyed a surprise visit from the man who started the heroic medical care that saved his life.
It was a chance for Mike and one of his brothers to say thank you for caring enough to fight for Mike's life when no one else could. Mike said, "the way he just come to my rescue...he didn't have to. I'd be 6 feet under if it wasn't for Robert Mack. "He's the biggest hero I've ever seen. When you say hero you see Robert Mack's face."
A very humble everyday hero. Robert says he was just in the right place at the right time.