Emergency Services - Rob's Story

I closed my eyes and my heart stopped – for six minutes…

Luckily, I was already at Jersey City Medical Center when my heart stopped. The hospital staff took immediate action and saved my life. I cannot express how grateful I am for the prompt care I received. Every member of the team went above and beyond for me.

For two days prior, I had been experiencing discomfort in my arms and torso. Since I live a very active lifestyle, I shook it off – thinking I pulled a muscle while exercising. However, when I sat down on my couch, an excruciating pain shot through my body. It felt like someone reached into my chest and started squeezing my heart. I felt nauseous and my left arm was tingling. At that moment, I realized, I was only 46 years old and I was having a heart attack.

My wife called 911 and an ambulance quickly transported me to Jersey City Medical Center’s Emergency Department. I was immediately prepped for the Cath Lab. But, when the hospital staff wheeled me into the elevator, my heart stopped.

A member of the nursing staff administered CPR in the elevator. Within a minute, I was in the Cath lab, where the team quickly shocked my heart, prepped me for an emergency angioplasty and stented my coronary artery.

While in the hospital for monitoring, the entire team at Jersey City Medical Center had compassion and everyone was more than willing to take time to listen to my questions and concerns. I asked if I’d be able to run, hike or climb ever again, and my doctor assured me yes, but it would take some time.


Twenty-two months after my heart stopped, I headed to the Nevada desert with one goal in mind: making it to the top of Boundary Peak – 13,140 feet above sea level. Even though it was the second highest peak I’d ever attempted, this was the last piece of the puzzle for completing my recovery. I wasn’t going to let anything stop me.

When I made it to the top, I stood on the largest boulder and let out a huge roar of joy! I had so many doubts and fears after my heart attack, but I set goals, pushed myself and achieved those goals. The fast action and outstanding care I received from Jersey City Medical Center’s award-winning Emergency Medical Services team allowed me to continue to live my life the way I want to. For this, I will be eternally grateful.

Rob Jenkins,
Hoboken, NJ

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