LAKEWOOD, Ohio (WJW) – Damar Hamlin‘s collapse hit close to home for national heart health
advocate Lindsay Davis of Lakewood.

“Seeing everything play out with Damar Hamlin has been incredibly emotional. Just having a connection to so many other patients who have gone through this,” said Davis.

The issue is deeply personal for this former Miss Ohio.

“I was a student athlete growing up. I was a ballerina. I danced seven days a week and after dance class one day, I collapsed. I was taken to the hospital and found out I had a heart condition called Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy,” said Davis.

Since then, Davis has dedicated her life to raising awareness of sudden cardiac arrest, even helping to pass her namesake piece of legislation in 2017 called Senate Bill 252, also known as Lindsay’s Law.

“Every year, athletic trainers and coaches, parents and students themselves have to watch an eight-minute video that educates them on the signs and symptoms of a heart condition. They have to sign off on a form saying they understand the symptoms and should anyone
experience them, they are removed from play until they are cleared by a cardiologist,” said Davis.

It also educates them on how to act fast with CPR or defibrillators.

“Absolutely anyone at any age at any activity level could be concealing a heart condition or have something happen to their heart in which an event happens, like sudden cardiac arrest,” said Davis.

According to Davis, right now, there are no state laws that require AEDS to be present at high school sporting events. It is just highly recommended.

Davis said she is currently working on another bill that requires every student to know how to perform CPR and use an AED.

“That’s what we really need to stress. These athletes at the highest level have these protections in place, but there are about 60,000 million kids that play sports in the United States and we need to be protecting them,” said Davis.