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McCormick Place officers honored for life-saving action

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Officials with the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) present official commendations to McCormick Place Officers.

Two McCormick Place fire safety officers received formal commendations Oct. 27 for saving the life of a tradeshow attendee in Chicago on Sept. 11. The commendation came from officials with the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA), the municipal agency that runs the McCormick Place Convention Center and historic Navy Pier.

Officers Thomas Chapa and Robert O’Loughlin responded to a call that an attendee had collapsed in a booth in the North Building during the Print Show. Upon arrival, officers found the man unresponsive and without a pulse. The officers used an automated external defibrillator (AED) to revive the patient and the local fire department later transported him to Mercy Hospital for further treatment. The patient is now doing well.


This is the 10th save at the MPEA using AED devices, which has helped save five lives at McCormick Place since the installation of the system in 2001. At Navy Pier, five lives have been saved using the system since it was installed there in 2004. There are 92 AED devices located at McCormick Place and 26 devices located at Navy Pier.

“I want to thank officers Chapa and O’Loughlin for their quick response and commend them for their heroic action,” said Juan A. Ochoa, chief executive officer of the MPEA. “We have made safety and security a top priority at McCormick Place and Navy Pier. We’re proud that our fire safety and security officers are among the finest at any public venue in the country.”

An automated external defibrillator (AED) can help prevent a patient from dying from sudden cardiac arrest, which is an electrical malfunction of the heart. AEDs send an electrical current to the heart to shock it back into a normal rhythm. Currently, thousands of AEDs are located in public and private buildings across the country to prevent deaths from SCA. McCormick Place and Navy Pier use the HeadStart FR2+ Defibrillators manufactured by Philips, the global leader in AED production.

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