“I had her heart in my hand”

The victims dropped where they stood, forming a row 20 or 30 feet long…

The child receiving CPR was not responding, but Mr. Compagno was not about to write her off…

By normal standards, a gunshot victim who is unresponsive after 15 minutes of CPR has almost no hope of surviving and can be declared dead. Christina had already received 20 or 25 minutes, according to a report radioed in.

“This was a 9-year-old girl,” said Dr. Randall S. Friese, 46, a trauma surgeon. “Even though she had CPR beyond our guidelines, I decided to be aggressive.”…

He tried a desperate last-ditch maneuver. Within about two minutes, he had cut open her chest, inserted a tube to fill her heart with blood and massaged the heart with his hand to try to start it beating again.

“I had her heart in my hand,” Dr. Friese said. “We filled it with blood. It still didn’t want to beat. So, it was over. We’re finished.”