Gregory W. Moyer was a fifteen year-old sophomore playing basketball for Notre Dame High School in East Stroudsburg Pennsylvania on the night he died, December 2, 2000. Notre Dame was playing a game in a brand new, multi-million dollar school. The school didn’t have a defibrillator and was far removed from emergency medical services. Greg walked off the court at half-time. Two minutes later, he collapsed on the floor of the locker room from cardiac arrest brought on by hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. He died shortly thereafter.
A nurse from the emergency room urged us to do something to make sure other families were spared the tragedy ours had suffered. She suggested starting a fund to buy defibrillators for local schools. Thus, we started Greg’s Fund to raise enough money to donate AEDs to the five high schools in our county. By the time of Greg’s funeral, enough money had already been donated to purchase seven AEDs. Obviously, Greg’s death allowed people to put a face with a cause.
A month after Greg’s death, we were contacted by the Pennsylvania Free and Accepted Masons. Their state-wide project for 2001 was the placement of 300 AEDs throughout the Commonwealth. They graciously agreed to fund half of the cost of up to thirty AEDs that we would donate. Money was still streaming into Greg’s Fund as news of his death reached more and more people. About the same time, we began working with Representative Kelly Lewis on legislation to foster placement of AEDs in schools.
It became clear that our modest fund set up to donate AEDs to local schools had grown far beyond our widest dreams. We felt the scope of the Fund needed to be broadened substantially to better meet the needs of people who were striving to introduce AED programs to save the lives of kids like Greg.
Presently, the goals of the Fund are to:
1. Donate AEDs to schools, emergency service organizations, and places of public gathering in the region
2. Assist organizations wishing to purchase AEDs
3. Educate the general public on the simplicity and critical nature of AEDs
4. Facilitate training on CPR and the use of AEDs
5. Encourage and support state and Federal legislation pointed at the placement of AEDs in schools and other public facilities