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Bro. Alejandro Cabral was made a Mason in 2010, he had no idea of the events that were about to unfold in his life. Alejandro is a Chicago Police Officer and a Past Master of Berwyn Lodge #839. On July 5, 2016, he and his partner, Juan Zuniga, responded to a report of a person who had been shot. Upon their arrival, they found a man with a chest wound.
Cabral, who is an Army veteran, was unable to stop the victims bleeding by applying pressure. He asked Office Zuniga to bring a QuikClot Combat Gauze from the first aid kit in his vest. They used it to control the bleeding until paramedics arrived.
Cabral and Zunig
a were familiar with the QuikClot bandage from their military training. The gauze is treated with a mineral that speeds up the body’s natural ability to clot. Cabral had used them in Afghanistan when treating wounded civilians. The QuikClot bandage is not part of the officer’s standard equipment. Cabral had used a portion of his department allowance to buy the bandages. He believes that every officer should be required to have them in their supplies.
Training on how use the special gauze has been offered on a voluntary basis to police officers since 2012. Cabral underwent that training about a year ago to refresh
the knowledge he had gotten while serving in the Army. Since the QuikClot is not provided by the department, Chicago Police officials are trying to work with foundations and organizations to equip as many officers as possible.
Because of Cabral and Zuniga’s heroic action and foresight, on Tuesday September 7, 2016 the City of Chicago presented them with a Mayoral Resolution for Heroism (City of Chicago Council Award). They also were recognized by the Chicago White Sox. The team gave them the honor of throwing out the first pitch on August 25, 2016 during a pregame ceremony honoring Police and Firefighters.
Since the incident, Chicago aldermen have been calling for the QuikClot gauze to be added to first responder’s equipment. It is not known how the cash strapped Police Department will pay for the QuikClot kit, but there may be federal funding available. Most believe that the $50 per package expense is well worth it. The New York Police Department will soon have the emergency kit added to their standard equipment.
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