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"Hoops for Hearts" raises money for new AED

Pictured are Chris Orr, Rosemount High School girls basketball head coach (left), and Stew Shepard, manager of the Irish Sports Dome (right). Photo courtesy of Dale Freking

By Rosemount Girls Basketball Booster Club

Back in early January, the Rosemount Irish girls basketball team played their neighbors to the north, the Eagan Wildcats, in a basketball game. That same night, the teams and their fans also participated in an event called "Hoops for Hearts".

Thanks to the following organizations and the fans of both teams, the event raised enough money to not only purchase a new AED (automated external defibrillator) and storage cabinet to be donated to The Irish Sports Dome, with additional funds to be donated to the American Heart Association: Rosemount American Legion, Rosemount Lions Club, Rosemount Rotary Club, Rosemount VFW Post 9433, Ratzlaff Homes and The Irish Sports Dome all contributed funds towards the purchase.

The Hoops for Hearts event was the brainchild of Coach Chris Orr, Rosemount girls' basketball head coach. A year earlier, Orr suffered a heart attack while teaching a physical education class at Rosemount High school.

The quick thinking and actions of another teacher, Tracy Cassano, and the ready access of an AED device on site, allowed Orr to fully recover from what could have been a deadly heart attack. He returned fully to coaching and teaching and to his wife, Amber, and their two young daughters.

Since that incident, Orr and his wife have made efforts to not only raise awareness for CPR and AED training, but to also make sure local businesses have AED life-saving devices on site.

Due to these efforts, The Irish Sports Dome, a facility that is heavily used by both communities, now has such a device on site and available.

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