Celebrating the Save the Heartbeat campaign success

Celebrating the Save the Heartbeat campaign success are Riverwood ER staffers, from left, Drew Van Santen, Gordy Schwartz, Dr. Jeff Ehnstrom, Heather Gretschmann and Kylie Mindrum.

Thanks to an outpouring of community support, Riverwood Healthcare Center Foundation’s Save the Heartbeat fundraising campaign, launched in February, was a tremendous success.

The campaign recently raised more than $18,000 to fund a second LUCAS chest compression system for the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit.  The first system was purchased for Riverwood’s Emergency Department thanks to year-end 2020 contributions for a grand total of $38,000 raised since Dec. 1, 2020.

All funds stay right here locally to support the purchase of LUCAS CPR equipment and ongoing emergency services needs in the intensive care unit and emergency department at the Aitkin hospital.

The Foundation’s Community Engagement Committee took the lead on the fundraising project to meet this critical community need.  Volunteer members include Dave and Dorothy Casey, Teresa Hasskamp, Jan Hegman, Gary and Kathy Herbranson, David Hommes, Roxy Hoppe, Peg Lundberg and Scott Turner.

“We were all enthusiastic about reaching out to our community to help fund this life-saving device,” said Peg Lundberg, committee chair. “We are thrilled with the incredible donor support, kindness and generosity for this project.  We were also grateful to Gary and Kathy Herbranson for sharing their personal story in how this device saved Gary’s life.  We heard many other similar stories throughout the campaign as well highlighting the impact of the effort.  This was a wonderful community endeavor that we can all be proud of, strengthening the ability of our local hospital to provide lifesaving care to our loved ones right here at home.”

Anyone who would like information about ways to give to support local health care may contact Kate Nelson, Foundation director at Riverwood Foundation, 218-927-5158 or knelson2@rwhealth.org.

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