On Wednesday, October 21, 2015, United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Michael Cohen was on his way home on his ambucycle from Jerusalem to the town of Adam, when his communications device alerted him to a medical emergency that occurred just outside his town. A terrorist had stabbed a female soldier who began bleeding at an alarming rate which posed an immediate threat to her life. Michael turned on his siren and sped over to the traffic circle at the entrance to Adam, where the stabbing had taken place.
Michael arrived together with two United Hatzalah volunteers. After making sure the scene was safe and the terrorist neutralized, the three EMTs located the young woman, Dikla Megidish, who was suffering from a stab wound to her neck. The knife had been removed from the wound leaving a gushing wound spurting bright red blood. The EMTs assessed that the knife had torn right through the woman’s carotid artery, leaving her very few minutes to live before she bled out completely.
With no time to lose, Michael quickly applied pressure to Dikla’s artery, using his fingers as a makeshift tourniquet. The two other EMTs helped control any other bleeding as Michael held on to the carotid artery. After a few minutes, a mobile intensive care ambulance arrived at the scene. The crew carefully took control over Michael’s makeshift tourniquet and then loaded the woman on the ambulance to be transported to Hadassah hospital.
When Dikla arrived at the hospital, she was sedated and attached to a respirator. The next day, just as Shabbat was entering, Dikla’s family contacted Michael and informed him that she was awake and in recovery after surgery. That Saturday night, Michael and the two EMTs drove to Hadassah hospital to visit the young woman they had saved.
Two weeks ago, Michael received an invitation in the mail. The woman was engaged and getting married and invited Michael to share in her happiness, six years later. Last Tuesday night, Michael attended the wedding and was welcomed with huge hugs from the entire family.
“When I went to the wedding I was nervous at what the reunion would be like,” Michael admitted. “I hadn’t seen Dikla in six years, I wondered if she would recognize me, especially during her wedding, would she come and say hello. I was pleasantly surprised. When I arrived, the beautiful bride Dikla spotted me from across the room and ran over to embrace me. The groom told me how honored he was to see me, and they insisted that we take a picture together. Reuniting with Dikla at her wedding was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and I am so grateful for the opportunity to see how I really did save an entire world.”