An overseas golfer on holiday in New Zealand, and who suffered a serious heart attack at Arrowtown’s Millbrook Resort, can thank a handily-placed defibrillator, a golf pro’, a retired nurse who administered CPR, and emergency response personnel, for saving his life.

An Irishman aged in his late-60s, who was a guest at the Central Otago golfing resort last month, had just left the venue’s driving range when he collapsed in a golf cart.

Millbrook member Bridget Mee, a former nurse who was a few metres away, saw the golfer "slumped down the side of the cart", took the defibrillator off the driving range wall and shocked the patient back to life with assistance from bystanders… including golf coach Ben Gallie who was taking instructions on the phone from emergency services to: "keep doing CPR even if you think he (the patient) is breathing." Course assistant superintendent Ollie Nilsson also administered CPR.

Coaching out of Millbrook Resort with its pristine golf courses, Ben Gallie has been head coach of the Otago men’s’ golf team for the past six years, is lead coach for the Wakatipu Junior Golf Club, and has been involved with coaching youngsters at Wakatipu High School which has been a prominent squad in the Otago inter-collegiate competition for the past eight years.

Mee says: "It was definitely the shock that saved [the patient’s] life. Everyone did a great job.”

Ambulance officers attended the incident, and the international patient was subsequently transported by the air ambulance to Dunedin Hospital where he was treated and duly discharged to begin recovery.

Millbrook director of operations Brian Howie said that having the heart resuscitation equipment so readily available: “Shows the importance of a defibrillator, and also just the way everybody was there and just went about doing their job and obviously saved this guy’s life." The defibrillator was installed at the golfing resort about 18-months ago.