Technology assists Suncoast runner in recovery from heart attack

  • 1

SARASOTA - This weekend, Katherine Hernandez of Bradenton and Greg Goebel of Sarasota will run in the Twin Cities Marathon sponsored by Medtronics, which made the devices that have allowed them to not only run, but to live.

Two years ago, Goebel, an avid runner, was pushing the envelope even for him. “It’s like a car overheating; he pushed too much -- ran too many too often," says wife Ali.

In fact, Greg ran 30 marathons that year; one too many it turns out. "You get the call that your husband died, but came back and is now in a coma."

Just past the halfway point of a marathon in Northfield, Minnesota, Goebel became light-headed. "I remember putting my hand down, then four and a half days later waking up in the hospital. I was transported to the hospital, and spent four and a half days in a coma," says Greg.

Amazingly, because of a cardioverter defibrillator made by Medtronic, Goebel has run 23 marathons since the cardiac arrest, and he will run #24 this weekend with 24 others who are living and running because of medical devices made by Medtronic.

"It’s terrific, I am excited. I owe them a whole, whole lot. I couldn't continue to live without it."

It is so routine, his running is now, that his wife doesn't even give it a second thought. “No problems now. You move forward."

While he runs with Katherine and the others, he hopes to get a message across to everyone. "It doesn't have to end, and that is what I hope to inspire."