Woman overdoses behind the wheel; State troopers arrive and save her life

DOWNERS GROVE, Ill. -- Two Illinois state troopers are credited with saving a woman’s life who had overdosed on opioids while behind the wheel of a car.

The 41-year-old woman was barely breathing when the troopers found her on the side I-294 with a blown tire Sunday night around 8 p.m.

Neither trooper had used the lifesaving overdose medication NARCAN before Sunday but they recognized the woman’s symptoms and saved her life.

Trooper Raymond Kurut first arrived on the scene of I-294 near 75th in the southwest suburbs.  There he found a man kneeling slurring his speech outside a car with a blown tire.  A woman was in the passenger seat. The man told the trooper she had taken some pills.

“Her symptoms included blue-ish, gray skin.  She had a weak pulse,” Kurut said.  “Her breathing was very labored.”

Since 2015, troopers have been carrying naloxone hydrochloride, or NARCAN, a drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Kurut administered the first dose.

“There was a slight increase in her pulse, (but) breathing didn’t change much,” he said.

In that time Trooper Matthew Dumais had arrived and a second dose of NARCAN was administered.

EMTs delivered two more doses before she got to the hospital in LaGrange where she regained consciousness.

Troopers later learned she was behind the wheel of the car when she overdosed.

Charges are pending.