Lifestyle & Human Interest

Customer Service Rep Helps Save Life of Customer Nearly 900 Miles Away


As soon as customer service representative Kimberly Williams heard the slurred voice of a cable customer on the phone, she knew something was wrong.

Williams could not mistake the troubling sound of the man’s voice, scarcely able to speak. From prior experience with her grandmother, Williams knew exactly what was happening.

Williams’ hunch that she was on the phone with a person having a stroke was confirmed when she heard the sound of the phone fall to the floor.

From her workplace in Jackson, Mississippi, Williams knew she needed to find a way to dispatch emergency help to the man who had been calling from a Grand Rapids, Michigan, suburb.

“Only thing I was able to get was his name and then his words got slurred right away,” Williams told WZZM. “And then I heard the phone drop.”

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The man was Dan Magennis, from Walker, Michigan, who decided to prioritize calling Comcast about his cable account before heading outdoors to do some yard work.

Magennis said he felt fine when he placed the call, but the moment he tried to speak, words did not come.

Are you familiar with signs of a stroke?

Incredibly, Magennis’ phone call landed in the lap of someone who not only recognized the emergency but also went above and beyond to help.

“Had I not done that I don’t know that I would’ve gotten back out of the backyard,” Magennis said of placing the phone call. “Honestly, it all happened so fast.”

Williams said she was familiar with the signs of a stroke because she was there, as a teenager, when her grandmother had a stroke. The familiarity of the slurred speech was unmistakable.

Williams frantically searched for and called several emergency dispatchers in Magennis’ hometown until an emergency response crew headed out to the man’s home.

Magennis was rushed to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital, the state’s largest comprehensive stroke center, and was placed under the care of neurosurgeon Justin Singer.

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Dr. Singer quickly unclogged the artery that had caused Magennis’ stroke, crediting Williams as the reason his patient was able to achieve such a positive outcome.

“Had this person not intervened and just hung up the phone, I think [Magennis] likely would’ve had a very large left-sided stroke that would’ve left him with significant disability,” Singer said.

Magennis has very little, if any, noticeable signs of a stroke, all thanks to a customer service representative who went above and beyond her job description.

“If that hadn’t happened, I’m not sure where I’d be today,” Magennis said. “I don’t think I’d be right here.”

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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Lifestyle & Human Interest