Susan Koeppen, SCA Survivor and TV News Anchor, Shares Her Story on "The Talk"

Susan Koeppen, SCA Survivor and TV News Anchor, Shares Her Story on "The Talk"

It's a sure bet that no other guest co-host of "The Talk" this week matched Susan Koeppen's story.

The weekday CBS program started welcoming personalities from network-owned affiliates across the country on Monday (June 25). Formerly CBS News' consumer reporter, Emmy winner Koeppen now is an evening news anchor for Pittsburgh's KDKA-TV, and she appears on "The Talk" Tuesday -- discussing how she almost died last fall.

"They asked for the stories the station did on my cardiac arrest," Koeppen said about her collapse while jogging in November in the Pittsburgh area, not long after she ran a 5K race. One of her fellow joggers was a physician, and two medical students passing by helped administer CPR to her until EMS technicians arrived with a defibrillator.

"When it first happened," Koeppen reflects, "I never cried, I never had any emotion about it, because I didn't remember anything. It was just sort of something that happened, and I was moving on and getting better. But whenever I give a speech now and I'm asked to tell my story, I totally break down. I always tell people, 'Please grab your hankies, because I have mine handy.'"

Also the wife of a doctor, Koeppen had surgery in March to repair the faulty heart valve that caused her crisis, and she was back at the KDKA anchor desk two months later. Recently, she also threw out the first pitch at a Pittsburgh Pirates game and participated in a walk to benefit the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation.

A huge advocate of people learning CPR, Koeppen knows she won't be alone at the "Talk" table as someone concerned about health: "Sharon Osbourne is now dealing with the news that her son Jack has multiple sclerosis, and that is something that changes your life. It comes out of the blue, you suddenly get the diagnosis, and you deal with it. It's sort of the same thing that happened with me. Something happened, I had surgery and I'm better, and now I need to live my life."

Though she clearly will get into serious territory on "The Talk," Koeppen also anticipates the occasion being "super-fun" as she helps Osbourne, Sara Gilbert and company interview scheduled guests including Cedric the Entertainer ("The Soul Man") and Cat Cora ("Around the World in 80 Plates").

"I'm hoping I don't have any sort of breakdown and start crying on 'The Talk," Koeppen says, "but it's live television and you never know what's going to happen. Maybe that's why Cedric the Entertainer is going to be there.

"I go way back with Julie Chen," adds Koeppen, "since we worked on 'The Early Show' together at CBS. I'm sorry she won't be there (Koeppen will fill the vacationing 'Talk' co-host's seat), but she gave me the lowdown on what to expect and how to fit in with all the ladies. I imagine it's like what happens when I get together with a bunch of girlfriends and we sit around drinking coffee, chatting each other up about what's going on in the world. That's something I know how to do well."

For the humor she expects during her "Talk" stint, Koeppen also embraces the chance to have a national platform for "my message: 'Today is a bonus, tomorrow is not guaranteed.' You have to live every day to the fullest, and appreciate the people and the good you have in your life.

"You never know what's going to happen when you walk out the door in the morning. And you really don't comprehend that until you nearly die on the sidewalk."

To watch the episode, click here.

SOURCE: Zap2it
cdirks's picture
cdirks wrote 7 years 7 weeks ago

A Therapists Perspective of Sudden Cardiac Arrest...

http://lucidmetta.wordpress.com/2012/06/25/life-death-and-the-space-betw...

From my blog:

On March 1, 2011, at the age of 42, I was about 20 min. into a routine two-hour run around Lake Merritt in Oakland when I collapsed from Sudden Cardiac Arrest (V-Fib). To my fortune, there was a runner, Andy Hill, who happen to be close enough to help break my fall and provide immediate aid. Additionally, three other bystanders rendered CPR and contacted 911. While under the care the paramedics, they continued CPR and used a defibrillator 2x before getting some semblance of a life-sustaining rythm from my heart. They took me to the hospital where I was put into a drug-induced coma and my body was cooled down to the upper 70s for 24 hours in order to protect my brain as my heart stabilized. I spent three days in the intensive care unit and a total of 10 days in the hospital. All I remember of this event is beginning my run that day and then waking up in the hospital, days later...

This is just a brief excerpt. Please feel free to click on the link above to read more of this post and my other posts. I hope that you will find my posts compelling, thought-provoking, and insightful as well as heartwarming.

Christopher Dirks, MFT

Chris

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