On the Road Again
Carl Williams, his wife Pam and Rachel Kartman
Bent over sweating profusely and feeling severe chest pains, Carl Williams couldn’t take the pain anymore––he was having a heart attack. The 65-year-old Idaho truck driver was rushed from a LaPaz restaurant on Feb. 1 to Memorial’s Emergency Department where a stent was implanted to relieve the 100 percent blockage in his left coronary artery. Carl was fortunate; his life was saved.
But now with a recovery in sight, he suddenly had another problem. As he underwent an echocardiogram in the Cardiac Cath Lab later that night, he and Rachel Kartman, R.D.C.S., a cardiac sonographer, started talking. Carl revealed to her that sitting in his truck trailer 30 minutes south in LaPaz were 21 tons of Angus beef. And if someone did not add gas to the tank that refrigerates the meat, it would be a total loss.
It wasn’t long after that Rachel and her husband drove to LaPaz and added $40 worth of fuel to his truck. She even brought back some of his personal belongings and later picked up his wife Pam from the airport. Eventually, a replacement driver finished hauling the beef to its destination. “There needs to be more people like Rachel,” says Carl. Three weeks after the heart attack, Carl was behind the wheel of his semi again. He holds a deep affection for the care he received in and out of the hospital. “It’s a miracle that this all happened here at Memorial.”