By Kate Raddatz

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Twin Cities woman, who survived a heart attack, is now giving back to the people who helped save her life.

Alicia Bravo is alive because her family gave her CPR until EMT’s arrived when she went into cardiac arrest three months ago. She hosted a party with a purpose at Surly Brewing Company Friday night.

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Patrons pulled up a chair, grabbed a beer — and a dummy, too.

“I just felt like I needed to do something,” Bravo, of Shakopee, said.

Alicia went into cardiac arrest while swimming near Cambridge, Wisconsin, as part of triathlon training in July. She survived after her family and EMTs performed CPR.

On Friday night, she got to thank them and give back at “Pumps and Pints.”

“We thought about this idea of doing CPR and having it be really fun, and making it a place that’s not intimidating so more people would want to come and to learn CPR,” she said.

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People attending the event learned CPR and how to use an AED. They also got a look at the automatic chest compression device that EMTs used on Alicia.

“If nobody’s around, certainly she wouldn’t have made it, and if nobody knew what to do — if they did nothing and just waited for the first responders and the ambulance, the chances of surviving become very low,” Mike Trullinger of Hennepin County EMS said.

Alicia first shared her story on WCCO in September, that just one year earlier, she had helped raise money for the small town to buy that chest compression device.

Alicia hopes to make Pump and Pints an annual event so that everyone feels confident they can save a life.

“It’s a really hard thing to thank someone for saving your life. I just say thank you, from the bottom of my heart thank you,” Alicia said.

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There was also a silent auction at the event. All of the proceedswill go to help the Cambridge EMT crew that helped her. She said if she can make it an annual event, she’d like to pick different organizations to donate to.

Kate Raddatz