Chesapeake man thanks strangers, first responders who saved his life

Michael Lee (WAVY Photo)

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — A Chesapeake man is alive thanks to the quick action of strangers. And today, he met the people who saved his life.

It was like any other Wednesday for Michael Lee: dialysis in the morning, pickle-ball in the afternoon. But two weeks ago, that all changed.

“One step, I felt fine,” said Michael Lee. “I moved over two steps and all of a sudden, I was getting dizzy.”

He hit the floor and strangers nearby immediately started to help.

Michelle Ellison, who is a recreation specialist for the City of Chesapeake, said she “had to assist him with CPR and first-aid. During that process, I had to give the AED also.”

Ellison works at the Indian River Community Center. Her first-aid training kicked in, the AED saving Lee’s life.

Lee said, “When they revived me, I was ready to get up and continue playing some more.”

Ellison and Lee had seen each other before in passing. But now, their lives are forever connected.

“I will never forget this moment, I just I think it’s beautiful to see just life,” said Ellison.

Lee knows he may not be here today if it weren’t for Ellison and others who didn’t hesitate to help.

“It’s just delightful to know that people are trained and care enough to help someone who needed it,” said Lee. “And I needed it.”

Lee says “thank you” will never be enough, but he will try to show everyone how much he appreciates what they did. He hopes to be back on the pickle-ball courts in a few weeks.