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Acadian Ambulance’s leadership team visited Nashville recently to present an AED to Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt and Project ADAM. Project ADAM was started in memory of Adam Lemel, a 17 year old student who died of sudden cardiac arrest while playing basketball. 

Following a recent national news story on Decker Sharp, a child who has congenital heart defects and needs an AED for sports activities and faced difficulties receiving one through his family’s insurance, Acadian Ambulance wanted to support the cause by donating the device. Although Decker’s family had already acquired an AED, they suggested that the donation be made to Project ADAM to support other children in need of devices. “We were proud to work with the team at Monroe Carell and Project ADAM to coordinate this donation. We know these devices will be put to good use and may save a child’s life,” said Acadian Chairman & CEO Richard Zuschlag.

During the presentation, Zuschlag was so moved by Decker’s story and the efforts of Project ADAM that he personally donated an additional five AEDs.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics and Project ADAM Medical Director Dr. English Flack said, “This gift from Acadian Ambulance to Project ADAM at Monroe Carell, for children who fall into the insurance gap of need, is incredible and inspiring. This AED is a gift that truly has the capacity to keep giving – the gift of life! Thank you for all that you do and I thank your company sincerely for your generosity to others.”

Acadian Ambulance is one of the largest ambulance services in the nation, providing transportation and medical service to areas in Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, and Tennessee. It is employee-owned and accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services, and its sister division, Acadian Air Med, is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems.

About Project ADAM Middle Tennessee

Project ADAM (Automated Defibrillators in Adam’s Memory) aims to prevent death due to sudden cardiac arrest in children and teens. We educate students and school staff through life-saving programs. Based at Children’s Hospital, we are committed to making automated external defibrillators (AEDs) available to all children and adolescents everywhere.

Donations can be made at


Acadian EMT Malia Nowlen, Business Development Coordinator Matthew Langley, Operations Manager Taylor Reine, President Justin Back, VUMC Dr. English Flack, Project ADAM Middle Tennessee Program Coordinator Angel Carter, Doug Sharp, Decker Sharp, Carrie Sharp, Chairman & CEO Richard Zuschlag, Operations Coordinator Tim DeMaya, Chief Medical Officer Dr. Charles Burnell, and AEMT Christina Culbertson