Thanks to CPR, Evie Louka is fine, and her grandparents are now trained, too

One-year-old Evie Louka, born premature with water on the brain, was in daycare in Richmond when she turned blue and stopped breathing.

Luckily for Stephanie Louka, her child was in employee-provided childcare at VCU Medical Center in Richmond, where Stephanie is an emergency medicine physician. And even more fortunate, the child’s teacher had been trained to administer CPR. Evie survived.

“It’s great that day and night, Evie’s with people who know CPR,” said Stephanie.

That includes husband and fellow emergency medicine doctor Amir Louka. Both formerly ran shifts with volunteer rescue squads in Virginia Beach. That led them to medical school and then residency training at VCU.

Teaching CPR to citizens is old hat at Virginia Beach Volunteer Rescue Squad. For years it has held free monthly classes open to the public.

On a recent Saturday, the subject was CPR for infants.

“Children can go downhill so fast that it’s important to begin CPR immediately,” said Ellen McBride, one of several VBVRS volunteers helping lead the session. Three of the attendees this day were Evie Louka’s grandparents.

“I was taking care of her for two weeks while her parents were away,” said Kaye Krebs. “So it easily could have been me who had to perform CPR.”

The classes are held at Station 8 at 1243 Bayne Drive.

“I didn’t have to tell my parents or Amir’s mother to take the class,” said Stephanie. “I am so proud of them.”

You can register for a non-certification CPR course at And then hope you never have to use it.

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