American Legion Hosts Red Cross, Stop the Bleed Training Course

By JENNIKA INGRAM | Reporter

American Legion Ronald Reagan – Palisades Post 283 invited members, school principals, leaders of houses of worship and other community organizations to participate in a First Aid and Stop the Bleed training course on Saturday, February 8.

“It was beyond my expectations and because of the high demand, we plan to run the class every two months,” First Vice Commander Jim Cragg said to the Palisadian-Post. “We want our American Legion Post to bring our skills in first aid to the community, so that the people of the Palisades can get trained and save lives.”

Cragg explained that the first block of instruction covered basic first aid, defibrillator and CPR—which are valuable for the workplace and family environment.

Mike Sweet of JTA CPR taught the class, and those who attended received Red Cross Certification.

Each year, the American Red Cross reports that more than 6.25 million people receive training.

Launched in 2017, Stop the Bleed is a newer program that has taught over one million people. Their mission is to train the public in basic bleeding techniques.

“The second block covered ‘Stop the Bleed’—training in tourniquets, blood clotting agents and pressure dressing using stop major bleeding (arterial), which is a major cause of death when it’s not addressed immediately,” Cragg continued. “Stop the Bleed is designed as a response to aggressive deadly behavior attacks and acts of terrorism, but is also pertinent to massive bleed injuries that can happen in the home or community.”

Dana Vilander of VTC Training, a 32-year veteran of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Emergency Services Detail and an Air Force veteran, taught Stop the Bleed.

“A lot of the new medical technology, like tourniquets and hemostatic agents, and new medical standards, like MARCH protocol, have originated in military medicine during the global war on terror, and Post 283 wanted to bring this valuable information used by our veteran Post members to the community,” Cragg explained.

The MARCH acronym is synonymous with Tactical Combat Casualty Care, and is an acronym for remembering the necessary steps in priority for saving lives in combat: M-massive hemorrhage, A-airway, R-respiratory, C-circulation and H-hypothermia.

“It’s not only for the Legion, and we want everyone from the community to come,” Cragg reiterated.

Cragg is also a local businessman, veteran nonprofit director and a lieutenant colonel in the Army Reserves assigned to the 1st Special Forces Command.

Contact Cragg to sign up or inquire about future classes at jimcraggalpost283@gmail.com. Additional information can be found at alpost283.com.