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Tragedy averted during Brodhead holiday parade
Emergency lights

By Gary Mays 


BRODHEAD — A Brodhead man’s life was saved when he went down toward the end of last Thursday’s July 4th Parade and had to be helped by bystanders and emergency officials participating in the event.

According to Brodhead Fire Capt. Rick Bedward, a paramedic, the man fell to the pavement near the end of the parade, which began at about 11 a.m. last Thursday. Social media posts indicated the man was carrying a flag and had a heart-related condition, but that could not be independently verified. Bedward said he could not provide the victim’s name or specific medical information, due to the constraints of health privacy laws.

But he did confirm that the incident happened to a man marching in the parade and that the response to the ordeal by bystanders, police, an EMT and another paramedic, was heartening.

“I was about two trucks behind him when it happened,” Bedward said. “When I got there, there was an EMT, and bystanders and police were starting to work” on the victim the moment he fell.

Bedward said that after performing life-saving measures, the man was taken by ambulance to a Janesville hospital.

“He wasn’t down long (when help arrived) so that was a very good thing for him,” said Bedward, adding that it was rare for there to be two certified paramedics assisting at any given medical call in the small town of just over 3,200 residents.

While the incident may have been traumatic for some parade watchers, Bedward said it was a great example to the crowd of the high level of care Brodhead residents can expect from their emergency medical responders, should they need them in a crisis.

“We had the whole town looking over our shoulder but it turned out alright,” he said.