Amherst County Deputy uses Narcan to save a life one day after training

AMHERST, Va. (WDBJ7)-- Field Deputy Mark Jordan has worked with the Amherst County Sheriff's Office for four years. He is trained to handle a variety of calls, from a cardiac arrest to a traffic violation.

Deputy Mark Jordan said timing was everything when he received an overdose call on April 5th, 2019.

Early in the morning on April 5th, though, he received a call that he was newly equipped to handle.

"Unresponsive male that was lying in the bathroom," Jordan explained.

He turned on his lights and sirens and made his way to the possible overdose, but before going in he went to his trunk and grabbed the newest tool in his tool-box: Narcan. The word "new" is not an exaggeration.

"Crazy how you can get trained on one thing and then the next day you have to use it," said Jordan.

Jordan was trained on the life saving drug one day prior.

"The guys face was exactly the same as the instructor had explained it the day before," said Jordan.

He used the nasal spray and brought the man back to life.

"It happened quick it was probably 30 seconds," said Jordan. "It started working and he started blinking."

"It's fate. It's fate," said Sheriff E.W. Viar.

Viar made the decision to arm all of his field deputies with Narcan. They were trained April 4th of this year and their first day carrying it was the next day.

He said the county has already seen at least two overdose deaths since January. There are about 40 overdose calls a year.

"I want to make sure that if we are there we can to everything within our power to save these people's lives," said Viar.

Jordan said the rescue squad has Narcan as well and they were on scene that day, but sometimes the deputies are on scene first.

"Instead of us just standing around watching- really not much you can do," said Jordan.

He said in this case, he was just doing his job, but the severity of what happened is not lost on him.

"He could have died, no questions about that," said Jordan.

According to Viar, the man Jordan saved refused further treatment, which the sheriff's office advises against.

While the Narcan will help save lives, the sheriff said a call like this is a sign of the larger addiction issue that is being felt across our region.