JENNINGS, LA (KPLC) - Heart attacks can strike at any time and for one woman it happened on Interstate 10 in Jennings. Cindy Watts, 43, and her family were driving home to Baton Rouge on Saturday when she started having pains in her left side and arm. Her husband Mike pulled over in Jennings at a gas station to get some water and aspirin and even asked if she wanted to stop at the hospital in Jennings.
Cindy said she was fine and if she needed to they would stop in Lafayette if the pain continued. According to Mike once back on the Interstate Cindy appeared to go into a seizure. As he pulled over and attempted to see what was wrong with Cindy, his son Jake, 16, called 911.
Within 3 minutes Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Deputy Chad Romero drove up and began giving CPR.
"When I arrived the she was unconscious. I got out of my unit and this man appeared to be trying to give his wife CPR. He told me he didn't know how to do it and that it was his wife," explained Romero. "Instinct just took over and I began taking one second at a time and administering CPR."
The paramedics arrived minutes later and were able to get Cindy to the hospital in Jennings. Doctors determined she had suffered a heart attack and needed surgery and said the CPR saved her life. She was airlifted to Heart Hospital in Lafayette. There it was discovered she had 100% blockage on her left side.
"It was very scary. She is very active and we were shocked to find out she had a heart attack," said Mike. "The doctors said had she not had the CPR she would have died. I can't thank the deputy and the hospitals enough for what they did."
"It's truly a miracle. She is doing fine and if you saw her you wouldn't believe she had a massive heart attack on Saturday. She is able to move. Doctors expect her to make a full recovery," said Mike.
After eight years of service with the department this so happened to be Deputy Romero's last week on the job. When asked if he felt like a hero - Romero said no he was just doing his job.
"I was just responding to the call. I'm glad it worked out the way it did. I encourage everyone to take a CPR class because you never know when you might need it," said Romero.
Cindy is still in the care of Heart Hospital in Lafayette and is expected to be released by Friday.